Allow marine products export from Paradip: Exporters

Bhubaneswar, June 17 (IANS) The Seafood Exporters Association of India (SEAI) Tuesday urged the central government to allow export of marine products from Odisha's Paradip port.

"Due to lack of container facilities, exports of marine products are not taking place from Paradip port," the state chapter of the association said in a memorandum to Union Tribal Affairs minister Jual Oram who hails from Odisha.

"The shipping lines are also reluctant to take a call on this port. Intervention of the shipping ministry is required to start marine exports from this port," the association's state president Gorachand Mohanty said.

Mohanty said Odisha registered over 300 percent growth in marine products exports in the last four years.

The total export of marine products from the state has grown from Rs.428 crore in 2009-10 to Rs.1,718 crores in 2013-14, he said.

"Though Odisha and West Bengal have tremendous potential in the area of shrimp production and exports, it could not be explored because of poor infrastructure," the memorandum said.

The average productivity in Odisha is hardly 1.3 tonne per hectare compared to 10 tonne per hectare in Andhra Pradesh, it said.

Odisha on an average farms around 15,000 tonnes of shrimps per annum compared to over 200,000 tonnes in Andhra Pradesh although geo-climatic conditions are more or less similar, it said.

Because of higher production in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha exporters are procuring raw shrimps from that state for processing and export from Visakhapatnam port, which was affecting their competitiveness in the international market.

Odisha can easily increase its exports from Rs.1,700 crore to Rs.10,000 crore in three years if the facilities are available, the memorandum said.