June 22, 2020
Malaysia looks to grow its tuna industry
Malaysia's Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister said Penang state has capacity to bring in more tuna landings and make Malaysia a major tuna landing hub in the region, The Borneo Bulletin reported.
Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee, the Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister said Penang state has suitable facilities to increase its tuna landings, with an international airport and international port facilities at Penang Port.
He said there are currently 17 licensed tuna fishing vessels and one tuna carrier operating in the Indian Ocean.
Kiandee said as Malaysia is an Indian Ocean littoral country and part of the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission, local fishermenwere granted the right to fish tuna in the Indian Ocean.
He said 101,627 tonnes of tuna worth MYR900 million landed in Malaysia in 2019.
While demand for tuna has dwindled because of COVID-19, with Malaysia seeing a 30% reduction, Kiandee said tuna exports have steadily resumed and is projected to return to pre-pandemic levels by end-2020.
Local movement restrictions imposed by the government due to COVID-19 resulted in logistics and distribution disruptions for tuna exporters.
- The Borneo Bulletin