BRIEF ON FISHERIES ON PAKISTAN
Fishery plays an important role
in the national economy. It provides employment to about
300,000 fishermen directly. In addition, another 400,000
people are employed in ancillary industries. It is also a
major source of export earning. In July-May 2002-03 fish and
fishery products valued at US $ 117 million were exported
from Pakistan. Federal Government is responsible for fishery
of Exclusive Economic Zone of Pakistan. In addition, It is
also responsible for making policies, inter-provincial
co-ordination, planning, research, quality control,
training, exploratory fishing, stock assessment, fisheries
management, fleet improvement, data collection and export
Pakistan is endowed with rich fishery potential. It is
located in the northern part of the Arabian Sea and has a
coastline of about 1,120 km with a broad continental shelf
and its Exclusive Economic Zone extends upto 200 n. miles
from the coast. There are about 16,000 fishing boats in
coastal area of Pakistan which operate in shallow coastal
waters as well as in offshore areas. These fishing boats
undertake fishing trips lasting for few hours to about 25
days depending upon type of fishing. Total production from
inland and marine waters is approximately 0.60 M. tons.
FISH HARBOURS OF PAKISTAN
The major fish harbours of Pakistan are:
- Karachi Fisheries Harbour
is being operated by Provincial Government of Sindh.
- Karachi Fish Harbour
handles about 90% of fish and seafood catch in Pakistan
and 95% of fish and seafood exports from Pakistan.
- Korangi Fish Harbour is
being managed by Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and
- Pasni Fish Harbour being
operated by Provincial Government of Balochistan.
- Gwadar Fish Harbour being
operated by Federal Ministry of Communication.
FISH PROCESSING PLANTS.
There are 29 fish processing units in Pakistan with storage
capacity of 10,000 tons, out of these 25 units are locate in
Karachi of Federal Government provided intelligentsia and
technical assistance to seafood establishments for improving
their processing conditions in line with various EU /
international standards. Through this process, 8
establishments have already improved their conditions and
were approve to export seafood to European Union countries.
In addition, another five plants have almost upgraded their
conditions and others are also undertaking changes in their
facilities to comply with EU / international standards.
A substantial quantity of fish is consumed locally. In
addition, small pelagics and by-catch of trawl fishing is
being used for production of fish meal. Remaining balance is
exported in salted dried, frozen and chilled form. The data
for consumption of fish is annexed.
Fish and fishery products are processed and exported to over 50 countries.
About 30 – 35% of the fish and fishery products are exported
to European Union countries. Japan, U. S. A. China, Saudi
Arabia, U. A. E. Malaysia, S. Korea, Hong Kong, Sri Lanka
and Singapore are other major importing countries. The
export data is annexed.
- Fish export has
showed an increasing trend in the past many years,
however, a substantial decrease has occurred during
1998-99 which is attributed mainly due to glut in the
international market and because of financial crises in
the Southeast Asian countries. Export of seafood is facing
many a problem notably among these are:
- Post harvest losses are
high due to handling of fish catch on board and long
- Congestion at Karachi Fish
Harbour. There are more than 16,000 fish boats operating
in Sindh zone.
- The storage capacity is
only 10,000 tons which is not sufficient to cater the
- Pakistan is exporter of
raw material or semi processed fish / seafood.
Marine aquaculture is
non-existent, however, fresh water aquaculture is fairly
The Government of Pakistan is taking various measures to
increase the export of seafood over US$ 500 million within
next two years. The measures are:
- Up-gradation of fishing
vessels to control post harvest losses.
- Provision of modern
peeling sheds for providing raw material to fish
- Flake ice plants on
- Intensive marketing
efforts at international level.
- Promotion of marine
- Human resource development
- Regular monitoring of
resources through stock assessment surveys and exploratory
- Procurement of handling
and cleaning equipments for fish harbours.
- Construction of coastal
In order to comply with EC Regulations and to control the quality of
seafood, Government of Pakistan promulgated Pakistan Fish
Inspection and Quality Control Act, 1997 and Rules, 1998
EPB’S ROLE IN FISHERIES
EPB has been the main coordinating agency in
improving the hygienic conditions in Karachi Fish Harbour
and up-gradation of fish processing units to meet European
Union and international standards.
Ministry of Commerce / Export Promotion Bureau provided
assistance to all agencies concerned with export of fish /
seafood from Pakistan. Th following assistance / funds were
provided by EPB to Karachi Fish Harbour to meet the European
Union requirements regarding hygienic conditions at the
EPB imported 10000 fish crates at the cost of Rs. 7.0
million and which are being used in auction halls, fishing
trawlers and processing units. EPB is also importing 200,000
fish boxes to meet the requirement at Karachi Fish Harbour.
EPB provided an amount of Rs. 5.0 million to Marine
Fisheries Department, Karachi for procurement of appliances
and equipments for up-gradation of Quality Control
Laboratory to meet European Union requirement.
EPB procured 200 fibre glass trolleys for handling of fish /
shrimps at Karachi Fish Harbour for an amount of Rs. 3.7
EPB provide Rs. 1.0million for up-gradation of auction halls
in Karachi Fish Harbour.
EPB procured hot water pressure washing machine for cleaning
of boxes and auction halls and foot operated taps at a cost
of Rs. 0.386 million for Karachi Fish Harbour.
Besides EPB played a
very vital role alongwith Marine Fisheries Department in
upgradation and approval of 7fish processing units by the EU
Inspection Mission during the month of March’ 999