Asia’s fishing industry is all at sea

The National
20 August, 2013

In Asia, fish provides 30 per cent of the animal protein in a typical diet.

In addition, millions in the region, especially among the poor, make their livelihood or supplement their incomes by fishing or related industries.

But the marine industry in parts of Asia including the Arabian Gulf is suffering from over fishing.

Consumer demand in the United Arab Emirates is rising rapidly and current catch levels are higher than UAE waters can sustainably provide.

Fish stocks in the country fell two-thirds in nine years – stocks were estimated to be 529kg a square kilometre in 2011 compared with 1,735kg per square kilometre in 2002, according to figures from the Ministry of Environment and Water.

To counter the declines, the Emirates has embarked on a number of initiatives. Dubai Municipality released 70,000 sobaity and sha’am fingerlings, or young fish, into the sea last month.

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