Pakistan's Sindh government has committed U.S.$4.34 million to revamp its fishing industry to gain entry into the European Union market. The majority of the money will go toward fishing vessel equipment and port and processing facility renovations in Karachi.
More than $1 million will be spent to renovate fishing vessels to meet EU standards. Another $1.8 million will go toward fiberglass-coated tanks and cold storage for the boats. The remaining money goes to renovation of Karachi Fish Harbor facilities.
In the past, Pakistan fishermen and processors have failed to comply with EU hygiene standards. Apart from strict hygiene requirements, the EU also requires traceability to guarantee the safety of seafood.
The EU market effort is being coordinated by Karachi Fish Harbor Authority, Marine Fisheries Department, Fishermen Cooperative Society, Sindh government and the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock.
The industry lost an estimated $50 million last year due to an EU shrimp embargo. The Sindh government has tried to bounce back, investing $750,000 last year, but it never managed to win EU approval. The market is important for Pakistan's shrimp industry, both for the profit margin doors it could open for other exports.