Only these two firms have completed nearly all formalities for the licences, said H E Dr Fuad bin Jaafar bin Mohammed al Sajwani, Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, MuscatDaily reports..
“We had given initial approvals to 19 companies which have a total investment value of around RO120 million from which two have completed almost all the requirements," he told the newspaper.
The remaining procedure would be completed soon, he said. H E Sajwani said the two companies will have a combined investment of over RO90mn.
“We opened the doors for investment in this sector, having set strict standards and offering attractive incentives. Other companies meeting the criteria will also be looked at.”
“The markets are conducive for aquaculture, which we hope, will become one of the main features of Oman's economy and a big step towards food security. Aquaculture has flourished in many developed and developing nations. It is a promising sector and we wish to make maximum use of our seas,” he said.
According to H E Sajwani, the sultanate utilises only five per cent of the fish available in its waters. Citing statistics, he said that Oman produced 158,000 tonnes of fish in 2011 and the yield jumped 23 per cent in 2012 using traditional fishing methods.
“A 23 per cent jump in a year that, too through standard fishing practices is an achievement that reflects the efforts of MoAF and its stakeholders.”
Aquaculture will give it further fillip, he added.“Fish is now the most recommended food. The global demand is much more than the supply and prices are increasing unprecedented,” he added.