ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s fisheries ministry will start a conservation program to protect lagoon eco-systems which will boost fisheries resources and eco-tourism also introduce aquaculture, expanding incomes of fisher families.
Sri Lanka’s ministry of fisheries said 11 metric tonnes of fish had been harvested from 10 key lagoon in 2015 and 10 metric tonnes in 2011.
While capture fisheries can be doubled by conservation, aquaculture can further increase fisheries production and expand the supply of protein for domestic consumption and export.
"The Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources had declared that this production can be doubled through the conservation of lagoons and making the aquatic ecosystem suitable for fisheries," the fisheries ministry said in a note to the cabinet of ministers.
"Extension of aquaculture in lagoons would further increase fish production."
Under the project livelihood development programs related to fish value addition, post-harvest production and tourism related industry promotion is planned.
Lagoons in Puttalam, Nayaru, Arugam bay, Panama and Rekewa will be prioritized initially though potential has been identified in 18 lagoons.
The budget has allocated 1,000 million rupees for the project in 2018 and another 1,100 million rupees for 2019 and 2020.
The Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, National Aquaculture Development Authority, National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency and Ceylon Fisheries Harbours Corporation.
Potential for expanding aquaculture has been identified in Jaffna, Nayaru, Batticaloa, Mundal, Rekawa, Negambo, Chilaw, Puttalam, Mawella, Lunama, Lankapatuna, Arugam Bay, Koggala, Kottukal, Panama, Komari, Achchankula and Garaduwa lagoons.