China offers lower price for cuttlefish: exporters fear decline in exports


September 07, 2012:  China moved to cut the price it offers for Pakistan’s cuttlefish, making it difficult for local exporters to capitalise on the new season’s catch which so far was ‘normal’, fisheries sources told Business Recorder on Thursday. “The new season crop is normal and of world quality,” head of Akhlaq Enterprises Akhlaq Hussain Abedi told Business Recorder, hoping that the seafood landing was likely to show a robust growth in the coming months.

However, he criticised the price of cuttlefish in Chinese markets. “China has cut the price of cuttlefish by $2 a kilogram, dropping it to just $3,” he pointed out. He believed that the price of other prime fish specie – squid – is also likely to drop significantly if China continued to fail to fetch good rates for its value-added seafood products on EU and US markets.

“Actually, China is struggling in global markets, particularly the EU and US, which are key markets for its value-added seafood exports,” he said, adding that the situation of China’s global trade would become clear by the year end. He said the squid export would start in October, but exporters feared a decline in its price in the Chinese markets.

Abedi said Pakistan served China as a key raw seafood supplier, feeding its value-added industries. “The impact of price decline for China on the global market will hit Pakistani seafood export,” he said. About the export of crabs, he said that Pakistan also shared a good volume of crustaceans in the world trade, adding: “One container of bluecrab of mine is sailing tomorrow to Malaysia”. The price of large-sized crab is $4.5 on the world market.

Shrimp landing was satisfactory, he said, adding that the price of such crustaceans “is growing internationally”. He said a certain shrimp known as ‘kiddi’ or ‘karokari’ is fetching $6 per kilogram on the world markets. “The same product the EU bought at $4 per kilogram before the ban,” he said.

Giving rather a bleak picture of Pakistan’s seafood exports to China, he feared the country may not fetch value for its exports this fiscal year. “Seafood export to China may decline this year,” warned Abedi. Officials of Karachi Fish Harbour Authority (KFHA) said that the seafood landing would grow once the use of destructive nets was banned. He said use of new nets would be made compulsory from October. “A 100 percent (increase in) landing of seafood catch at fisheries could only take place once fishermen start using new big-mesh nets,” he said.



Courtesy: BR

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