(UDHAYAM, COLOMBO) – After 12 years, Cey-Nor launched its first large-scale fishing vessel larger than 60 ft in length. Approximately 1,480 multiday fishing vessels are engaged in deep sea fishing on international waters. However, 40% of the harvested fish remain unfit for consumption due to the inadequacy of facilities in these fishing vessels.
Fish exports to the international market require high-quality fish and Sri Lanka is able to satisfy only 30% of the total demand. Thus, the government had consented with the Fisheries Minister Mahinda Amaraweera’s proposal to deliver Sri Lankan fishers with multiday fishing vessels with latest technology and facilities under a concessionary basis.
As a result, Cey-Nor initiated manufacturing large-scale multiday vessels larger than 55ft. 10 vessels of similar nature will be manufactured in 2017 and 2018. A vessels costs 60 million and fishermen shall pay only a 50% of the cost and the rest will be borne by the government. These vessels are equipped with cold room facilities and a vast storage capacity for the harvested fish.
Long lines will be used as the method of fishing and the new vessels will be developed to cause minimum post-harvest losses. Further, Cey-Nor has also initiated manufacturing another multiday fishing vessel with advance and modern facilities. Further, Seychelles has also ordered 05 large-scale fishing vessels from Sri Lanka this year, which are already under construction.
Minister Amaraweera launching this multiday fishing vessel mentioned that developing the country is impossible without enhancing the production and export economy. A decade ago Sri Lanka decided the fish price in the global market. Due to former governments’ failure to develop the fisheries industry, the place is now dominated by Maldives, said the Minister.
The current government’s intention is to generate 10 lakhs of new employment opportunities within the coming 3 years. Accordingly, the Fisheries Ministry will be creating one lakh of employments in the fisheries sector within the next 2 years, emphasized the Minister.
Cey-Nor until recent past was operating as a loss-making government entity. However, under the current government it has reached profit making levels. Revitalizing other government institutes too will not be impossible under a competent management, said the Minister.