After organizing a successful international co-op to co-op business fair recently, NCDC is now aiming to boost export of ornamental fish to double farmers’ income. “We wish to create a solid batch of Ornamental Fisheries Entrepreneurs in the country”, said NCDC Managing Director Sundeep Nayak to Indian Cooperative.
And for this, the cooperative lender joined hands with National Fisheries Development Board and Government of West Bengal to organize a high octane one day workshop on “Ornamental Fisheries Entrepreneurship Development” on Friday at Golden Tulip Hotel in Kolkata, West Bengal.
The objective of the workshop was to bring various related stakeholders on one platform to discuss various possibilities of promotion of entrepreneurship and employment generation in the ornamental fish sector, says Nayak.
The workshop was attended by over 100 participants from nine states including Telangana, West Bengal, Odisha, Jharkhand, Bihar and other states. The participants were fish farmers, entrepreneurs, youth, women and a member of the weaker socio-economic sections. Over 30 women registered their participation.
NCDC MD, in his speech shed light on the objective of workshop and the challenges being faced by this sector. “This sector will contribute towards attaining the government vision of Doubling farmers’ income by 2022 and making India a 5 trillion $ economy by 2024-25”, he felt.
“There are several barriers observed in ornamental fisheries sector including lack of skilled manpower, non-availability of quality brood stock, transportation of ornamental fish to major markets is not streamlined and others”, he underlined.
Several sessions were organized where experts having expertise in their respective fields taught the participants. Shri Tarun Sridhar, Former Secretary to Govt of India and currently Senior Advisor, NCDC was the Keynote Speaker.
Vivekananda Patra, Sahakar Bharati West Bengal, Mrs Mamata Mahanta Tribal woman coop functionary and Fishcopfed MD B K Mishra were among the participants.
In his keynote address Sridhar said “There is a huge demand for ornamental fishery in national and international market and over 1.5 million people are engaged in this sector.”
“The sector has the potential to generate employment opportunities and alleviate poverty besides other things. There is a huge market potential in this sector”, added Sridhar.
“The estimated worth of international ornamental fish trade at retail prices is estimated to be more than US$ 8 billion while the entire sector including aquariums, tanks, plants, accessories, etc is estimated at US$ 20billion. About 90% of ornamental fish is traded from Kolkata and the remaining 10 percent from other parts of country”, said Fishcopfed MD B K Mishra.
Addressing the workshop, Dr M V Rao, Additional Chief Secretary in Govt of West Bengal said, “Cooperative banks will offer loans to entrepreneurs who want to take up business in the fisheries sector that includes ornamental fisheries.
“Our government is laying emphasis on cluster development across the state to provide a boost in the business of ornamental fisheries,” Rao said while addressing the workshop.
Dr S Kishore, ACS Fisheries Deptt, WB chaired the first technical session with Dr BK Mahapatra senior Scientist, ICAR-CIFE and Dr BK Mondal, expert. Dr Suvarna, Commissioner Fisheries, Telangana chaired a technical session with Dr Archana Sinha, Scientist, ICAR-CIFRI and Dr G Ramakrishna Rao expert NFDB.
Dr J.K. Jena, DDG, ICAR also spoke on boosting Ornamental Fisheries Entrepreneurship in the country.
Talking to Indian Cooperative several participants said that they found this workshop informative and up to their expectations. One of the participants Vivekananda Patra said, “The workshop was very fruitful and we felt a need to create awareness about the ornamental fishery among the general public. The marketing of ornamental fishery in big cities is there but the same is not true for small cities”, he suggested.