“India stands world number 2 in global fish production. Further India stands world number two in the sectors of Inland capture and aquaculture. We are number seven in marine capture production/fisheries,” Radha Mohan said while addressing 33rd session of Asia Pacific Fisheries Commission.
“India registered an increase of 92.8% in aquaculture and 15.1 % in marine catches in the last 10 years (2003-12). The share of India’s production from aquaculture is 6.3% of the world. Currently, our total production is 9.51 million tonnes,” the minister adds.
India is bestowed with wide array of natural resources for developing marine, brackish water and inland fisheries and aquaculture holds importance, since enhanced fish production by sustainable aquaculture is the key for ensuring food security and poverty alleviation, the minister opined.
Aquaculture in India relies heavily on inland aquaculture of finfish even though potential for mariculture production of finfish remains largely untapped.
“We are finalising the guidelines for foraying in to mariculture in cages along with cage culture in open water bodies such as reservoirs. The cage culture is aimed at effective and optimal tapping the potential for natural water resources of marine and inland waters,” Mohan stressed.
According to Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) estimates, the human consumption of fish is about 80 per cent of the world’s fish production at per capita of 17.1 kilogram which is expected to rise considerably by the year 2030.
“It is necessary that we need to collectively take measures for sustainable increase in fish production. With the capture fishery resources dwindling at an alarming rate, the international community needs to take certain harsh / drastic measures for ensuring continuous supply of food fish.
This underlines the importance that fisheries and aquaculture, directly or indirectly, play as an essential role in the livelihoods of millions of people in the region and entire world from the small-scale fishers and farmers who harvest the fish to the men and women who work in the post-harvest handling and large processing industry,” the Minister said.
Representatives from FAO, the Fisheries Commission and Agriculture Ministry, and delegates from countries of Asia Pacific Region attend the meet.
Asia Pacific Fisheries Commission (APFIC) is an important platform for the governments of APFIC members, international and regional fisheries and aquaculture organisations to discuss important and emerging issues related to the development and management of fisheries and aquaculture in Asia and Pacific region.