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Risk Analysis Aspects in Aquaculture - India urges FAO to assist

INDIA - Shri Sharad Pawar, Minister of Agriculture, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution has underlined the need for Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations to formulate suitable approaches to conduct risk analysis in aquaculture applicable to the situation in a particular country.

Risk Analysis Aspects in Aquaculture - India urges FAO to assist INDIA - Shri Sharad Pawar, Minister of Agriculture, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution has underlined the need for Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations to formulate suitable approaches to conduct risk analysis in aquaculture applicable to the situation in a particular country. The potential and real impacts of introducing new species into the aquatic eco-systems have been the subject of major debates worldwide. It is important to have feasible guidelines for the import of new species of fish and their strains keeping in view the bio-security aspects of aquaculture. It will be desirable to have simplified procedure of risk analysis process, as risk analysis for pathogens of aquatic animal is a relatively new field for most of the countries, the Minister said while inaugurating the FAO Sub-Committee Meeting on Aquaculture here today.

The global production of fish from capture fisheries and aquaculture was about 101 million tonnes of food fish in 2002 and the total amount of fish available for human consumption increased to 103 million tonnes in 2003 mainly on account of aquaculture production. While the output from capture fisheries grew on an annual average rate of 1.2 per cent the output from aquaculture fisheries grew at a rate of 9.1 per cent. This tempo need to be maintained to meet the projected demand of food fish estimated at 121 million tonnes by 2010. Indias contribution to world fish production is about 4.4 per cent with its present production reaching a level of 6.3 million tonnes comprising 2.8 million tonnes of marine and 3.5 million tonnes of inland fish, the Minister informed.

Shri Pawar said that Government of India would be enacting a legislation for the inland marine sector similar to the comprehensive policy

for marine fisheries announced by the Government. Government of India had also enacted the Coastal Aquaculture Act, 2005 to regulate the coastal aquaculture activities in an eco-friendly and sustainable manner. Further, a National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB) has also been constituted to bring major activities relating to fisheries and aquaculture for focused attention and professional management, the Minister said.

Exports of marine products from India during 2005-06 was an all-time record of 5,12,164 tonnes valued at Rs. 7245.3 crore. European Union accounted for 29 per cent of our exports followed by USA, Japan and China. The major item of export was frozen shrimp, which came mainly from aquaculture sources, the Minister said.

The five-day Session of the Third Meeting of COFI Sub-Committee on Aquaculture is being attended by representatives from about 50 countries.

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