Fishery head seeking injection of 2.5 billion USD to modernize Russian fish industry

February 28, 2008 16:17

Russia's State Fisheries Committee has developed a concept of a federal target program of the nation's fishery industry development in 2009-2015. Subject to ministries' consents the concept will be forwarded for consideration by the Cabinet by 1 March 2008, according to Vedomosti.

The document emphasizes the need to "save the fishery industry" because through the recent 15 years the nation's catch has decreased 2.2-fold, the fleet has worn out at 68%, fish canning capacities have been underexploited, the nation's economy annually loses 1 billion USD due to poaching and seafood consumption in Russia had been falling for some time as compared to the high figures of the Soviet Era. However in the last few years the trend has reversed with the consumption reaching about 16 kilo per capita and outlook remains positive.

The total cost of leading the industry out of stagnation is estimated at 62 billion RUB for the period of five years. Half of the sum (32.4 billion RUB namely) shall be sourced from the federal budget, while 29 billion RUB shall be provided by non-government investors.

The money will be spent for construction of fish hatcheries/ranching stations, reconstruction of dams and waterways in marine ports in Russia's Northwest, South and Far East, modernization of processing equipment and refurbishment of fish, mollusks, shellfish and seaweed farms. Some 15 billion RUB will be spent for construction of new vessels, including patrol and research ships.

If the program is approved, by 2013 Russia will see a rise of wild catches by 42.4%, production output growth by 14.4% and per capita seafood consumption increase from 12.6 to 16 kilos. Moreover, by 2016 the federal target program will be repaid as the budget will receive 20 billion RUB as extra taxes, the Committee's head Andrey Krainy promised.

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