Oman to conduct fish species census
9 August 2007
MUSCAT — In a bid to boost the fishing sector and help the local fishermen, the government of Oman has launched a comprehensive survey to take stock of available fishing species in its territorial waters.
This is the fourth such survey being conducted by Oman's Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, the present one coming after a gap of 17 years and will provide a database for live water wealth. The earlier surveys were carried out in 1975, 1983 and 1990.The results of the surveys have contributed to drafting the national fishing policies and strategies to increase production.
The number of fishermen and the produced fish quantities have witnessed a remarkable increase and Omani fish products are now sold at a number of foreign markets.
The Sultanate's fish production last year grew by 9 per cent to hit 150,000 tonnes.
The OMR2.6 million survey, to be conducted in association with a New Zealand-based company, will help the ministry to ensure better management of fish wealth with the help of the accurate data which will be gathered during the survey.
This survey is expected to enable the ministry to augment the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), increase the number of Omani fishermen and raise the volume of fisheries stocks, eventually increasing Omani products for exports.
The project will run through 26 months covering all the seasons and includes surveying of the surface and deep sea resources in addition to the fish resources in the Sultanate's territorial waters from the area of southern Masirah island to the Sultanate's border with Yemen at a depth that ranges between 20 metres to 250 metres.More than 25 Omanis will be trained to work on board the survey vessel which will use modern and state-of-the-art technologies, sensors and special equipment designed for exploring sea beds.
Good News for the fishing industry!