Fisheries sector in Al Wusta is key asset to economy

AL DUQM: The Governorate of Al Wusta is famous for its marine wealth. The governorate is rich with different types of Omani fish like shrimps, abalone, kingfish, emperor, groupper and seabream due to the long coastline as the governorate overlooks the Arabian Sea and is considered a key asset to the Omani economy in fish production internally and externally. Many residents of the governorate work in fishing and the associated professions, including fish transport, sale, and trade. The Department of Fisheries in the governorate plays an important role in organising fish put-up in the market and the implementation of many projects for the development of the fisheries sector.
Khalid bin Hamad al Hadabi, Director of the Department of Fisheries, in the Governorate of Al Wusta said that shrimp traps control project was completed over the past year where it achieved positive results during operation, including preserving the shrimp stocks and regulating fishing with the licensed fishing gear, as well as creating self-censorship among the fishermen to maintain this stock, noting that the cost of this project stood at RO 109,000.
He added that Fishermen Complex in Ras Madrakah in the Wilayat of Al Duqm was completed and it attracts more than 200 fishermen and workers in the fisheries sector from other regions, adding that the project aims at reducing expat labour and encouraging Omani fisherman to work and maintain the fishing profession.
It is worth mentioning that the fishing sector in the Governorate of Al Wusta provides many jobs. Statistics registered with the Department of Fisheries in the governorate indicate that there are 4,500 registered fishermen in the Wilayats of Mahout, Al Duqm and Al Jazir and they own 2,791 fish licences, 1,796 of them are fishing licences, 328 for fish marketing, and 667 technician licences and one licence for the commercial fish farming.
The Director of the Department of Fisheries added that the annual production of fish amounted to about 76,736 tonnes of all types of fishes in 2015, worth RO 26 million, in addition to 277 tonnes of shrimp from the fish farming project in Pintot in the Wilayat of Mahout.
With regard to the number of fishing ports in the Governorate, Al Hadabi said that there are 3 harbours, Al Lakbi in Al Jazir, Masirah and Al Duqm harbour is under construction with an estimated cost of about RO 60 million, adding that these harbours offer a number of services for fishermen to facilitate fish landing operations, boat docking and fuelling and supplying water for all ships and small boats, in addition to plants to fish cooling to maintain their quality.
It is worth mentioning that the Department of Fisheries in the Governorate of Al Wusta implements many seminars, meetings and awareness lectures, targeting about 4,000 fishermen, students, specialists in fishing activities, owners of fish cooling plants and fisheries transporters. — ONA