Iran will produce about 8,000 tons of cultured shrimp in the current Iranian year (started March 21), indicating a 20-percent increase against the figure for the same period last year.
Stating this, Deputy Minister of Agricultural Jihad Gholamreza Razeqi told ISNA that shrimp production capacity should reach 50,000 tons a year by the end of the Fifth Five-Year Economic Development Plan (2010-15).
Last year, Iran produced about 6,200 tons of cultured shrimps, he added.
Razeqi, who also heads Iran Fisheries Organization (IFO), further said that the government has allocated one trillion rials ($100 million) to support the shrimp industry.
He explained that according to the package, the matured debts and cash penalties of shrimp farmers have been predicted in the budget for the current Iranian year.
He put the entire interest rates of banking loans and the fines of delayed payment at 1.4 trillion rials ($140 million), of which $100 million has been made available from this year’s budget.
The official listed liquidity shortage and debt of shrimp breeders as the major problems facing the shrimp industry.
However, with the approval of the aforesaid package, the problems will be overcome, he concluded.
Earlier, managing director of Iran’s Development Fund for Export of Aquatics said that fisheries output had reached 700,000 tons per annum, adding that the country has potential to raise the figure to 3 million tons.
Arsalan Qasemi pointed out that the aquatic exports fetch over $100 million.
He said based on the Fifth Five-Year Economic Development Plan, fisheries output is predicted to reach one million tons per year.