Monday, 21 January, 2019

Ban on hilsa export to be lifted : Minister

Published on: 6:18 pm - Monday | January 8, 2018

The government is going to lift ban on hilsa export soon to prevent smuggling.


Fisheries and Livestock Minister Narayan Chandra Chanda came up with the information while responding to reporters at the conference room of the ministry on Monday morning after a press piefing, reports UNB.


“We want to export hilsa, as its production has increased as well as demand in the international market,” said Narayan. adds : The Ministry of Commerce banned the export of hilsa and other fish on August 1, 2012. The ban on all fish except hilsa was lifted on September 23 of that year.


Though the ban is in effect, hilsa fish are being smuggled out of the country, Chanda said.


“As a result the government is losing out in taxes. If we allow exports it will open the way for legal trade and diminish smuggling significantly.”


Large hilsa fish are smuggled out of the country and are thus rarely available on the domestic market, he said.


The government will also continue conservation efforts to protect female hilsa fish.


According to the ministry, hilsa fish make up nearly 11 percent of fish produced in Bangladesh. The fish also contributes 1 percent to the country’s GDP.


Nearly 75 percent of world hilsa production occurs in Bangladesh. The fish provides direct and indirect employment to 2 million people.


Last year the patent, design and trademark department named hilsa fish a ‘geographical indication product’.


UNB report adds : The minister also said that there is no need to import meat in the country now as the government has a plan to be self-sufficient in meat production.


“The price of meat is reducing at the markets and we expect that it will continue,” he said.


Narayan Chanda said that the government will take steps to reduce the price. But it will not be possible to reduce price like the past.


‘However, we will ping the meat price under control within 1-2 years,” he said.


The minister said the government has already taken a project titled ‘Beef Cattle Development’ for increasing meat production.


Besides, the Livestock Department has also started work to produce ‘Proven Bull’ through “Peed Upgradation Through Progeny Test”, said Narayan.


Besides, the minister said that country’s fisheries sector contributed to about 3.61 percent in the gross domestic product (GDP) in 2017 which was one fourth of total agricultural production.


“The ‘Blue Growth Economy’ has already been included as ‘Pilot Country’ in sea economy of Bangladesh,” said the minister at the press piefing.


He also informed that the government established three Fish Inspection and Quality Control (FIQC) laboratories in Dhaka, Chittagong and Khulna.

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