Mauritius calls for investment in fisheries

Mauritius calls for investment in fisheries

PORT LOUIS – Mauritius’s finance minister yesterday called on investors in the fishing industry to take advantage of the Indian Ocean island’s rich marine resources, saying the country wants to become a world-class “seafood hub”.

Facing erosion of trade preferences from its traditional sugar and textile exports coupled with rising oil prices, Mauritius wants to broaden its economic base by developing new sectors which will generate essential foreign revenues. The minister, Rama Sithanen, invited participants at an international conference to invest in the island-nation.”A great asset is our large Economic Exclusive Zone (EEZ) of 1,9 million sq km with close proximity to a rich fishing ground,” said Sithanen.”In addition to this natural endowment, the government has invested massively in infrastructure.”The EEZ is a zone extending from a nation’s coast, which gives it special rights over marine resources.Industry officials say developing countries with control over fishing grounds are playing an increasingly important role in the world’s fish industry with their share of global exports growing to 48 per cent in 2003 compared to 37 per cent in 1976.The Indian Ocean region is one of the main fishing zones in the world, which experts say has an abundant stock of different fish species.”The objective is to transform our island into a world-class centre for trading, warehousing, processing, distribution and re-export of fresh, chilled and frozen, raw or value-added seafood products,” said Sithanen.The fisheries sector contributes around one percent of the island’s gross domestic product (GDP), but the government wants to double this, increasing export revenues to 10 billion Mauritius rupees over the next two to three years.-Nampa-ReutersThe minister, Rama Sithanen, invited participants at an international conference to invest in the island-nation.”A great asset is our large Economic Exclusive Zone (EEZ) of 1,9 million sq km with close proximity to a rich fishing ground,” said Sithanen.”In addition to this natural endowment, the government has invested massively in infrastructure.”The EEZ is a zone extending from a nation’s coast, which gives it special rights over marine resources.Industry officials say developing countries with control over fishing grounds are playing an increasingly important role in the world’s fish industry with their share of global exports growing to 48 per cent in 2003 compared to 37 per cent in 1976.The Indian Ocean region is one of the main fishing zones in the world, which experts say has an abundant stock of different fish species.”The objective is to transform our island into a world-class centre for trading, warehousing, processing, distribution and re-export of fresh, chilled and frozen, raw or value-added seafood products,” said Sithanen.The fisheries sector contributes around one percent of the island’s gross domestic product (GDP), but the government wants to double this, increasing export revenues to 10 billion Mauritius rupees over the next two to three years.-Nampa-Reuters

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