Bloomberg News

Madagascar Shrimp Industry Urged to Boost Catch to Avoid Losses

September 28, 2011

Sept. 28 (Bloomberg) -- Madagascar’s shrimp catch must increase “sharply” to help offset an increase in oil prices that left the industry facing a loss, said Rado Rakotosoa, director of the main industry body.

Fuel accounts for 40 percent of fishermen’s expenses and costs have risen by about 38 percent over the past year, Rakotosoa, head of the Economic Observatory of the Shrimp Industry, said in an interview on Sept. 26 in Antananarivo, the capital. International shrimp prices have also fallen, he said.

The industry may lose 15 billion ariary ($7.3 million) this year “if there isn’t a sharp improvement in production,” Rakotosoa said.

Madagascar exports about 8,000 metric tons of shrimp a year, according to the Fishing Ministry. The catch in the second quarter totalled 2,826 tons from 37 fishing boats, compared with 2,151 tons by 30 boats in the same period a year earlier, Rakotosoa said.

The Indian Ocean island nation, situated off the east coast of Africa, relies on agriculture to generate 29 percent of output in its $8.6 billion economy, according to the African Development Bank.

--Editors: Paul Richardson, Alastair Reed.

To contact the reporter on this story: Saralea Judicaelle in Antananarivo via Nairobi at pmrichardson@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Antony Sguazzin at asguazzin@bloomberg.net.


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