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Fish exports from the Maldives in the second quarter of 2021 have recorded a 58% increase compared to the same period last year.
As per the Quarterly Economic Bulletin published by the Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA), the volume of fish exports increased significantly to 21,758.2 metric tonnes in the second quarter of 2021. The amount is a 58% increase compared to the 13,744.7 metric tonnes recorded in the second quarter of 2020.
In the bulletin, MMA stated the surge in the volume of fish exports primarily reflected the growth in the export of frozen skipjack tuna by 125%, owing to the sustained global demand for shelf-stable canned tuna, for which skipjack tuna is a popular raw material.
Meanwhile, the volume of frozen yellowfin tuna declined by 20% during the review quarter, followed by canned or pouched tuna, which fell by 4%.
Additionally, MMA observed a moderate expansion in the gross value added of the fisheries sector in the first quarter of 2021, and further improvements in the performance of the sector in the second quarter, as suggested by the increase in fish purchases made by processing companies and the significant increase in the volume of fish exports. Total fish purchases also increased by 35% in the second quarter of 2021 and totaled 16,221.7 metric tonnes, predominantly due to the 89% increase in the purchase of skipjack tuna.
Meanwhile, yellowfin tuna purchases recorded a marked decline of 61% during the quarter.