Invest in Yemen - Fisheries

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With increasing fish catches and rising global demand, Yemen’s fisheries sector provides investors a clear business case for consideration. Investment in the sector in decades past has already contributed to raising the value of fish exports from $33 million in 1996 to $213 million in 2004. Financial returns for the end of 2010 should exceed USD $500 million. Of all the countries in and around the Arabian Peninsula endowed with a coast, Yemen has in terms of production been the most successful.

The country’s unique strategic location allows its fisheries sector to reap the wealth of two plentiful seas – the Arabian Sea on its extended southern border and the Red Sea to its west, each with its own set of advantages. The Arabian Sea is only 1 of 6 Large Marine Ecosystems (LME) in the world to have reported relatively constant or increased landings in past decades, the rest have demonstrated clear declines. Numbers recorded since the 1950s have in fact shown a steady positive trend both in tonnage as well as dollar value. Of those species most prominently caught in the Arabian Sea and its more proximate Gulf of Aden are tunas, bonitos, billfishes, herrings, sardines and anchovies (FAO 2003, NOAA 2010).

The Arabian Sea by volume and revenue since 1950

Source: NOAA (2010).

Yemen’s neighboring Red Sea has also shown potential for investors. Rich particularly in rock-lobster and yellowfin tuna, Yemen and Somalia’s catch percentage grew by 60% from 1990 to 1999 to just over 80,000 tons.

Key Strengths:
In addition to its unique positioning, Yemen provides other key strengths contributing to its attractive fisheries sector. They include:

·         Yemen's ports in Aden and Hodeidah for shipment to regional and international markets
·         A wide coast, approximately 2500 kilometers in length
·         More than 160 Yemeni islands for fishing operations around the year
·         High quality marketable marine life and fish species
·         Strong global demand for fisheries product exports
·         Abundant, experienced low cost labor (competitive income of USD $180/month)
Investment Opportunities in Aquaculture
Aquaculture also presents a significant opportunity for interested investors, with shrimp being its main product. The industry has a strong domestic market, especially in hotels and restaurants, and caters to international clients in Europe, East Asia and the USA. Fisheries and aquaculture related activities are positioned as a key generator of foreign earnings through exports and will play a key role in the country’s future development plans (FAO 2003). Musallam Group, established in Yemen in 1965, has one of the largest aqua farms operating off its coast. It is only one of several high profile projects currently active.
Current Successful Projects in the Fisheries Sector
Name of Project
Owner or Company
Cost (USD)
Mosallem's Farmlands for
Marine Biology
Abdullah Akeel Musallem
Al Hodeidah
Al Hada'a Expansion for Marine Biology
Al Hada'a Company for Marine Biology
Al Mahrah
Preparation, Refrigeration and Marketing for Fish
Al Lualoah Co. Ltd, For Fish
Al Jambary's Product Farm
Khaleb Ali Mohammed Sowaidan
Total: 10,399,244 $

 GIA can help

The fisheries sector in Yemen has great potential for growth and even great potential for investment. GIA will help investors learn more about industry opportunities and, when applicable, establish contact with the various Yemeni institutions and financial arrangements responsible for fisheries management, monitoring, statistics, training and credit in the country – the Ministry of Fish Wealth, the Department of Inspection and Control, the Marine Science and Resources Research Center, the Fisheries Training Institute and the Co-operative and Agricultural Credit Bank, respectively.

For further information on opportunities in fisheries, please contact GIA’s sector expert in the field:

Name: Mr. Raji A. Bassaid
Position: Head of the Services & Agriculutural Sector
Language: Arabic
Tel: 967 1 262 962 / 262 963
Fax: 967  1 262 964
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