July 3, 2012


Chile seafood exports higher for January-April period



Chile's seafood product exports have reached US$1,694 million in the first four months of 2012, an increase of 8.6% over the same period last year, when US$1,560 million were gained.


The volume of exports between January and April 2012 also rose: it experienced an increase of 15.5%, changing from 371,630 -- in 2011 -- to 429,200 tonnes this year, the Undersecretariat of Fisheries (Subpesca) reported.


The structure of participation in relation to the volume of exports was led by frozen products (55.8% of the total), according to the latest Sector Report of Fisheries and Aquaculture by Subpesca.


After these products, fishmeal, fresh chilled products and dried seaweed were located.


The average price of fishery products exported between January and April was US$3.90 per kilogramme, 6% lower than in the same period in 2011.


According to statistics from Subpesca, the main exported product was Atlantic salmon, which accounted for 25.6% of total sales abroad. It was followed by the rainbow trout and the Pacific salmon.


Chilean products were destined to 91 countries, of which the nine major ones accounted for 84.8% of total exports. Among them, Japan, US, Brazil, China and Spain stood out.


With respect to the catching sector, between January and April, 2012 the accumulated volume of fish exports reached 196,700 tonnes worth US$371.7 million, reflecting a positive variation of 13.3% over the same period last year.


In the first four months 81,450 tonnes of fishmeal were sold abroad for US$101.8 million while a year before 97,410 tonnes had been exported for US$158.8 million.


The most important destinations of fishmeal were China, Japan and Spain. Out of the total exported fishmeal, 57.6% had prime quality, 22.5% had super prime quality and 18.5% had standard quality.


Sales of frozen seafood products abroad totalled US$162.4 million, which represented an increase of 28.4% over the same period in 2011. These products were shipped mainly to Nigeria, US and Spain, with shares in value of 34.5%, 17.6% and 8.1%, respectively.


As for canned products, the sales performed in the first four months of 2012 totalled US$25 million, 4.9% less than a year earlier. The main markets were Spain, Singapore and Hong Kong, with shares of 26.6%, 14.6% and 10.1%, respectively.


Aquaculture sector exports accounted for 78.1% of the total value of foreign sales and for 54.2% of total exports in the first four months of this year, with US$1,322 million and about 232,000 tonnes.