Image: Alpha Ocean Resources Berhad / FIS
'Gov’t provides funding to help deep sea fishing industry players': Minister Ronald
Monday, September 26, 2022, 06:00 (GMT + 9)
The government is providing assistance, including funding through Agrobank, that can be used by deep sea fishing industry players to modernise vessels and fishing mechanisms, said Agriculture and Food Industries Minister, Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee (pix).
He said the initiatives are not only to help industry players but also to attract more parties to explore the deep sea fishing sector.
“Funding is provided by the government through Agrobank, and we hope that industry players take advantage of the assistance.
“We are focusing on the deep sea fishing industry, which has not been fully explored. This is in line with the National Agrofood Policy 2.0, as it is not only for the continuity of food supply but also opens up opportunities to export deep sea fishing resources,” he told reporters after launching a fish processing plant and cold storage facility, here today.
In the meantime, he said that the tuna fishing industry has great potential as a new source of wealth for Sabah, but has not been fully explored.
“The waters of Sabah are rich in deep sea fishing resources that have not yet been explored; these tuna are migratory, unfortunately, they are not caught. Deep sea fishing is a great economic resource to increase the state's income,” he said.
Super frozen tuna -60 (Photo: AORB Group - Alpha Ocean Resources Berhad)
From January to August this year, Malaysia recorded 55,138.63 metric tonnes of tuna landed, worth more than RM491 million.
Meanwhile, Agrobank chief executive officer, Tengku Ahmad Badli Shah Raja Hussin, said that the government, through the bank, is providing RM150 million in funding this year to help the fishing industry players.
“In the first phase (of this year), thus far, we have received and approved 37 applications, and have disbursed RM132 million to applicants to finance fishing boats in terms of modernisation - from wooden to fibre vessels, and equipment purchase.
“As for the second phase, as much as RM200 million in funds will be provided next year,” he said.
He said that Agrobank welcomes applications from local fishermen and together develop the fishing industry towards achieving a sufficient food supply for the people's consumption, thus reducing dependence on imports.