Find Fisheries expertise in United Republic of Tanzania
- Overview of industry
- Fishery bodies
With a coastline stretching over 1, 424 km and access to three large lakes, the fisheries and aquaculture industries in Tanzania form an important part of food security in the country, providing 27% of protein, as well as being a source of export goods. The industry exports fish and seafood to regional markets such as Congo, South Africa and Sudan. In 2007 exports of Nile perch, mainly to the EU market, was worth over US$ 150 million. Agriculture, forestry and fisheries contribute 45% of GDP (of mainland Tanzania in 2007) and in 2006, 73% of the workforce was employed in the agriculture and fisheries sector.
In order to manage a growing demand for fish, the government’s approach to sustainability in the industry is to encourage aquaculture, thus reducing the strain on the existing stocks. In addition, some NGO projects are in place to encourage ecological and sustainable fishing methods.
The catch profile of the industrial marine fisheries is dominated by, in territorial waters, shrimps and lobsters and in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), tuna, marlin, sword fish and sharks. Artisanal marine fishing takes place exclusively within territorial waters, the catch consisting principally of shrimps and fin fish.
Freshwater fishing, all of which is artisanal, has a catch profile mainly consisting of scombrides, snappers, Nile perch and mackerel from Lake Victoria and sardines, Nile tilapia, dagaa and pelagic sardines from other the other large lakes Tanganyika and Nyasa. Small lakes such as Rukwa, Babati and Manyara, however, also contribute significantly to overall national fisheries. A 2006 survey found that there were approximately 39,881 freshwater fishing vessels including boats dhows and canoes.
Aquaculture is a growing sector with much potential for investment. Shrimps, seaweed and tilapias are the most commonly farmed marine produce. Freshwater fish farming is also a growing sector employing around 14,000 people. (2013) An estimated 3000 people are involved in seaweed farming which, in the early 2000s, was becoming one of the most popular cash crops in the islands of Tanga and Zanzibar.
The Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries Development is the government body responsible for the promotion and development of the fisheries industry in Tanzania along with the Fisheries Sector of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism. The national fisheries are regulated under the Fisheries Policy (1997), the Fisheries Act (2003) and the Fisheries Regulations (2004).
Private sector bodies are involved in the promotion and implementation of sustainability programmes and have been identified as a potential source of investment in the industry.
The Tanzania Fisheries Research Institute (TAFRI) is a research centre established by the government in 1980 to complement the development work of the Ministry.
As much of Tanzania’s fisheries industry is dominated by small, artisanal fishing, the largest companies are those involved in fish processing. Examples of such companies include Tanzania Fish Processors Ltd and Tanzania Fisheries Development Co. Ltd.
|Fisheries organisations in United Republic of Tanzania|
|Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism||
|Tanzania Fisheries Research Institute||