Seafood export to Egypt down by 60 percent

August 30, 2013


Seafood export
Seafood export

Pakistan has lost around 60 percent seafood export share on Egyptian market in the wake of escalating political crisis in Egypt since ouster of President Morsi. “Egypt is a key market for the country’s seafood export but the crisis there caused Pakistan to lose its 60 percent share,” fisheries exporters said on Thursday.

The country’s main product is shrimp to Egypt and other Middle Eastern countries, they said, adding that the exporters are now in search of new destinations to maintain their export. “It is a huge fall in the wake of growing uncertainty in Egypt,” said former chairman of Pakistan Fisheries Exporters Association (Pakfea), Faisal Iftikhar.

However, he pointed out that the seafood exporters are now pondering to shift their trade focus on China, Saudi Arabia to offset the negative impact the sector hit by Egyptian chaos. “There are other markets as well like China, Saudi Arabia and the EU where the same fisheries products can be exported,” he said, adding that Egypt was one of the key markets for the country to lose major export share there.

CEO Akhlaq Enterprise Pvt Ltd, Akhlaq Hussain Abedi, had earlier also confirmed the country’s seafood export to Egypt is in trouble from the rising political uncertainty there. However, exporters are now planning to increase seafood export to China as cuttlefish and squid, besides shrimps are the main appealing products in the largest far eastern country.

Exporters said the political quagmire in Egypt is as a “big” setback for dwindling seafood export, fearing the prolonging uncertainty in Arab republic may pull down the sector’s growth. Showing dismay over the annual fisheries fast decline, Faisal Iftikhar said the shrimp yield this season has been dull for untiring fishing around the year. “Around 20-25 percent fall has hit the shrimp catch since the new season has begun abruptly last July,” he added.

According to exporters, the country’s seafood export is struggling to maintain its share on the Egyptian market for the second time as first was after overthrowing of Hosni Mubarak and now Morsi. Low prices for seafood products on the world markets has already hit Pakistan fragile fisheries sector. As a result, the country could only manage to export $317.612 million of fish and shrimp during last fiscal year, which is less by $2.314 million than that of the corresponding fiscal year, official statistics indicate. Courtesy Business Recorder

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