MoAF considering 24 aquaculture projects worth RO853mn
Oman is steadily making progress to achieve high fish productivity through large scale aquaculture projects. The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MoAF) is currently considering 24 projects worth RO852.67mn, capable of producing 293,000 tonnes of fish annually. The ministry stated that all 24 applications are in various stages of approval, and most of them will be implemented during the five-year plan of 2016-20.
It further said that the total expected production from these projects will be around 293,000 tonnes a year, valued at RO733mn. The income from these projects will be around RO7.8mn as direct revenue, while creating more than 13,000 job opportunities. The ministry said that five major aquaculture projects (totalling 13,100 tonnes) will be implemented from 2017 to the beginning of 2018.
The projects include production of 4,500 tonnes of Indian white prawns in Jalaan Bani Bu Ali, a project in Duqm to produce 1,000 tonnes of sea cucumbers and 1,500 tonnes of grouper and a project to produce 1,000 tonnes of abalones and 1,500 tonnes of groupers in Shalem and Halaniyat Islands.
The other two projects are for the production of 3,000 tonnes of long finned breams in Quriyat and 600 tonnes of barramandi in Sur. Other applications that the ministry is considering include projects to produce 2,850 tonnes of local shrimps, 500 tonnes of groupers, 400 tonnes of finfish, 2.4 tonnes of sea cucumbers, 900 tonnes of shrimps and 330 tonnes of abalone. In addition, there are three projects undertaken by one company for the production of 6,250 tonnes of groupers, 4,986 tonnes of local shrimps and 145 tonnes of barramandi.
The Oman Aquaculture Development Company (OADC), has nine aquaculture projects approved by the ministry. Some of the projects include fish farms to produce 3,000 tonnes of saltwater fish using floating cages in Quriyat. Another one involving floating cages in the village of Dhabab in Quriyat and a project in the village of Awarib in Jalaan Bani Bu Ali for shrimp farming. OADC has also given provisional approvals to some projects on the condition of first obtaining a site.
These include 500 tonnes capacity grouper (hamour) farm that will be located in the village of Fins in Quriyat, an aquaculture project in Mirbat to produce 100 tonnes of abalone, a project to produce 15,000 tonnes of shrimp annually in Al Jazir, 3,000 tonnes capacity floating cages farm in Ras Abu Dawood in Quriyat and another project with a capacity of 3,000 tonnes fish production in Tiwi in Sur.
The Blue Water Company project in Quriyat is expected to start during the second half of the current year. The project is expected to produce 300 tonnes of long finned seabream (kofar) using floating cages in Quriyat. The allotted area for the project is more than 1.7mn sq m in sea.