Fishermen return with catches taken in the waters of West Bengal. (Photo: Souvik Das Gupta / Creative Commons / Flickr)
West Bengal seeks more funding to boost fishing development
Wednesday, January 11, 2017, 02:50 (GMT + 9)
West Bengal wants to size a share of at least 20 per cent from the total national programme of INR 30 billion (USD 439.7 million) to drive the Blue Revolution.
To that purpose, it has categorized fisheries sector as a sunrise sector providing investment opportunities in areas of fish production, exports, processing and tourism.
The National Fisheries Development Board is aiming at eight per cent productivity growth touching 15 million tonne production by 2020 through the Blue Revolution.
Within this framework, as a part of an integrated development and management of fisheries, West Bengal state will also promote pisiculture, and has taken steps in the creation of infrastructural facilities like construction of rural roads, housing, rural electrification and tube wells in both inland and marine fishing villages.
The state has also created 810 large water bodies for fisheries, and provides fish food.
In addition, it will integrate fisheries zones, fishery estates, Sunderbans and Digha will be developed as special fishery areas, large fish farming will be promoted and land and associated legal documents will be provided to homeless fishermen.
Meanwhile, the government has framed West Bengal Fisheries Investment Policy -2015 for micro, small, medium & large enterprises in fisheries sector, which focuses on extending fiscal incentives for setting up of new micro, small, medium and large enterprises, the Financial Express informed.
Moreover, the government could lease out water bodies on a private-public partnership mode to encourage joint ventures with the private sector in the entire value chain of the fisheries industry in areas of infrastructure, research and international marketing.
It also plans to implement large-scale skills development programs to improve the quality of human resources in the sector and boost investment.
The aim is to produce more than 1.8 million tonne of fish in 2017, of which 75 per cent will come from fresh water and 25 per cent from brackish water.