Production of fisheries and aquaculture in Tunisia fell 4% in the first seven months of 2011, against a drop of 11% at the end of May 2011, from 60.4 thousand tons in 2010 to 57.8 thousand tons in 2011.
According to data provided by the Directorate General for Fisheries and Aquaculture coming under the Ministry of Agriculture and Environment, deep-sea fishing products declined by 23% against an increase of 9% in the production of blue fish.
This decrease is explained by the non-regularity of activities of the fishing fleet and stoppage of most of boats in the months of January and February 2011, in addition to the negative impact of surface fishing being practiced in a chaotic manner especially near coasts.
Yet, aquaculture production increased by 31% in the first seven months of 2011, reaching 3,044 tons, against 2,320 tons in the same period of 2010.
This increase is mainly due to the rise in production capacity of fishing structures in aquaculture and coming into operation of new companies in this field.
The same data indicate that 15,495 tons, valued at 153.7 million dinars (MDT), were exported during the first half of 2011, against 9,979 tons valued at 95.3 MTD in the same period last year, i.e. an increase of 55% in quantity and 61% in quality.
During the same period, Tunisia has imported 18,514 tons (44.5 MTD) of fishery products, against 22,111 tons valued at 45.7 MTD in 2010, down 16% in quantities and 3% in value.
The trade balance of fishery and aquaculture recorded a positive surplus, reaching 109.2 MTD against 49.6 MTD in the same period of 2010.