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NCE hails EU lifting of ban on fish exports

21 June 2016 12:00 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The NCE which has leading exporters of fisheries products in its membership is pleased on the success of the government in having the EU lift the ban of fishery product exports.   


Sri Lanka has been one of the biggest exporters of value-added fishery products such as fresh and chilled sword fish, tuna, and related species to the EU.


Sea food exports which were severely affected by the ban have continued to decline in volume and value since the announcement of the ban at the end of 2014. 


Sea food exports from Sri Lanka declined by 35.5 percent to US$ 163.1 million in 2015 compared to US$ 252.6 million in 2014, since the EU accounts for 68 percent of total fish exports from Sri Lanka as the 2nd biggest exporter of fresh and chilled Sword Fish and Tuna to the EU. The ban on fish exports to the EU was imposed in January 2015 as a result of engaging in Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing activities.  


Thereafter, the Sri Lankan Government has taken a number of steps to have the Ban lifted by introducing rules and regulations to conform with international norms for fishing in the high Seas.  National Plans have also been prepared to counter IUU Fishing. The Chamber understands that similar irregular activities are reported to be taking place in the case of arecanuts, which has duty free access to India under the FTA.  In this instance certain consignments of imported arecanuts from Indonesia which don’t have preferential duty access  to India, is stated to be re-exported from Sri Lanka as originating from Sri Lanka.  


The Chamber understands that this matter has been brought to the notice of the EDB as well by affected Traders, apparently after the detection of certain irregular shipments by the Indian Customs.
The Chamber therefore urges the relevant state authorities in Sri Lanka to investigate this matter with a view to taking appropriate action, since such irregular activities could adversely affect the benefits enjoyed by other product sectors as well. 

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