July 21, 2011
Bangladesh earns from shrimp exports
During the 11 months of the last fiscal year, Bangladesh gained BDT42 billion (US$562.1 million) from exporting fish, mainly shrimp.
During the period, the total export stood at 90,890 tonnes with shrimp fetching BDT35 billion (US$468.4 million) out of the total earning, which was BDT7.7 billion (US$103 million) higher than the previous fiscal, according to the fisheries directorate documents.
During the 2009-10 fiscal, the country's total fish export was 77,640 tonnes. Bangladesh exports quality shrimps and other fish products to several EU countries, including the UK and France. The US, Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong and some other countries are also good importers.
The fish export in the last few years suffered a setback due to the presence of harmful chemical 'nitrofuran' in exported shrimps At one stage, the government imposed a ban on its export to EU countries. After a seven-month ban, exports resumed in January 2010 as the situation improved due to some government measures.
Despite difficulties, the shrimp export fetched BDT20 billion (US$267.7 million) during the 2009-10 fiscal year. Due to the growing demand for shrimp in the international market, its farming has expanded in the country's coastal areas.
Currently, shrimp is cultivated on 140,000 hectares of land and the production stood at around 150,000 tonnes during the 2009-10 fiscal. Fish used to be cultivated on 64,000 hectares of land only years back.
Fisheries minister Abdul Latif Biswas said, "To ensure quality shrimp production, the government has taken some measures like registration of farms and issuance of licences, training of fish farmers on environment-friendly cultivation".