Mozambique: Shrimp catches fall in fist half of year

15 August 2008

Maputo, Mozambique, 15 Aug – Catches of shrimp in Mozambique fell by 730 metric tons in the first six months of 2008 in a year-on-year comparison, Assistant-Director of National Fisheries Augusto Nhampossa has said.

The Maputo official said shrimp catches reached 3,719 tons by the end of June, compared to 4,454 tons in 2007, a situation caused by cyclones that have battered Mozambique’s coastal areas and increased fuel costs.

The Noticias newspaper reported there has also been a reduction in the numbers of shrimp boats putting to sea due to the inability of their owners to get fuel.

Nhampossa said the 3,710 tons of shrimp were caught in 5,169 days of fishing (14 boats operating theoretically 365 days a year), with an average daily catch of 720 kg, figures lower than in 2007 when the result was 4,454 tons caught in 5,289 days with an average of 842 kg per day.

The fisheries official also said tropical cyclones that hit Mozambique earlier this year, particularly Jokwe that affected the Sofala banks, the country’s main shrimp production area, could also have delayed the onset of the fishing season for this shellfish. (macauhub)