The Fish Wealth Department of the Ministry of Municipality and Environment and Al Qamra Holding Group yesterday signed a contract to establish a fish farming project involving floating cages in the sea.
Assistant Undersecretary of Agricultural Affairs, Livestock and Fisheries at the Ministry of Municipality and Environment, Sheikh Dr Faleh bin Nasser al-Thani, signed the contract with Chairman of Al Qamra Holding, Hamad al-Qamra, and a number of stakeholders.
Dr Faleh confirmed that this project is the first of its kind in Qatar and will provide 2,000 tonnes of high quality fish which will be popular with consumers.
He added that in addition to the economic importance of the project, it also has environmental aspects reflected in maintaining fish stocks and reducing fishing of high demand variety like the grouper.
Head of Fisheries Section at the ministry, Abdulaziz al-Dehaimi, highlighted the importance of food security saying it is one of the most important goals the State is working on.
He said Qatar pays great attention to fish farming projects as they help in increasing local fish production.
He added that the ministry is taking necessary measures to limit fishing efforts and fix the volume of annual catch, with the aim of protecting fish stocks from attrition in order to preserve it for future generations.
Al-Dehaimi said the state’s fish farming project aims at increasing the self-sufficiency ratio of fish, which is currently around 80%, as well as to protect and support the stocks of fish and conserve the marine environment and biodiversity.
He added that in compliance with the directives of the leadership to activate the private sector in the State, the technical committee announced a public tender to establish a strategic fish farming project involving floating cages in the sea last February.
He added that many investors applied for the tender and Al Qamra Holding won it.
Meanwhile al-Qamra highlighted his company’s efforts to implement the project, in co-operation with a Norwegian company specialised in the fish farming, and hoped that the project will contribute to promoting the State’s efforts in food self-sufficiency, especially in fish produce.
The fish farming project involving floating cages is the first of its kind in Qatar and will be followed in the near future by an integrated coastal shrimp farm project that will be made available to private sector investors.
There will also be two more fish farming projects involving floating cages.
The Ministry of Municipality and Environment has also completed the establishment of the aquatic life research centre in Ras Mutbakh, which is currently in the preparation phase.
The centre will help in setting up several small and medium scale fish farming projects with the aim of making Qatar self-sufficient in five years’ time.
The fish farming project involving floating cages aims at production of 2,000 tonnes of fresh fish annually to meet the demand of the Qatari market for high-quality fish at affordable cost.
The project employs state-of-the-art technologies in fish farming. Al Qamra Holding Group has contracted a Norwegian firm with vast experience in fish farming to equip and operate the project.
The project is spread over an area of 900,000 square metres and includes the farming of economically high-value species such as silvery black porgy, yellow-finned seabream, white spotted spine foot and orange-spotted grouper.
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