Southeast Asia, European Union and the U.S. are the major importers
Seafood exports in 2012-13 were higher at Rs.18,856.26 crore, thanks largely to a surge in export of frozen shrimps, which constituted more than 50 per cent of the quantity and value.
Addressing a press conference here on Monday, Chairman of Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) Leena Nair said that 2012-13 was a difficult year but the seafood business did well to make record earnings in terms of value and quantum.
India exported 9,28,215 tonnes of seafood (up 7.68 per cent over the previous year), valued at $3,511.67 million (0.1 per cent rise over the previous year). Rupee earnings went up by 13.61 per cent, thanks to the dip in rupee value against the dollar.
Countries in Southeast Asia bought the largest quantum of Indian seafood (23.12 per cent in dollar terms) followed by the European Union (22.14 per cent) and the U.S. (21.29 per cent). Shipments to Japan fell by 10.67 per cent in quantity and 18.36 per cent in value. Japan bought 76,648 tonnes ($372 million) of Indian seafood last financial year.
“The increase in export figures must be viewed in the light of weaker economic conditions in the European Union, still recovering economy in the U.S., moderate growth in China, technical barriers to trade by Japan, continuing anti-dumping duty and the possibility of countervailing duty on frozen shrimp by the U.S. and continuous devaluation of Indian currency”, said a hand-out from the MPEDA.
Ms. Nair said that Vannamei shrimp production touched 1.47 lakh tonnes as compared to 80,000 tonnes during the previous year when total seafood exports stood at 8,62,021 tonnes valued at Rs.16,597 crore ($3,508 million). MPEDA expects seafood exports to grow to $4.3 billion during the current financial year with help from increased Vannamei production and better quality control measures.