The fishing sector continues to be among the most important and fastest growing agriculture allied sector in this country. The sector provides livelihood to more than 2.8 crores fishers and fish farmers at the primary level and several more along the fisheries value chain. In recent years, the sector has shown impressive growth with an average annual growth rate of almost 11% (2014-15 to 2018-19) and the fish production in the country has registered an average annual growth of about 8% during the same period. Given its importance, geographic spread and export reach, the fisheries sector clearly has a very significant role to play in India’s economic development.
The export of marine products stood at 13.93 lakh metric tons and valued at Rs. 46,589 crores (6.73 billion USD) during 2018-19. India is the second largest aquaculture producing country and among the top fish exporting nations in the world. About 17% of agricultural exports of our country are fish and fish products.
Considering the pivotal importance of the Sector, the Government has recently rolled out the ambitious scheme Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY). The scheme focuses on the doubling of fishers’ income through a variety of interventions and addresses the challenges beset in the sector.
The country’s fisheries potential is immense and yet to be harnessed in an organic and sustainable way. The Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) is a step in this direction of realizing the potential of the fisheries sector. Realizing the importance of the fisheries sector, the government, consciously has designed the PMMSY, to bring out a sustainable blue revolution in the country and in doubling fishers income.As the government is entrusted with the doubling of farmer’s income, the various components of the PMMSY has been designed to achieve the objective of doubling farmers’ income in broad areas of inland fisheries, marine fisheries, and post-harvest management of fisheries.
PMMSY aims to enhance fish production to 220 lakh tons by 2024-25. The ambitious scheme will result in doubling export earnings to Rs.1,00,000 crores and generate about 55 lakhs direct and indirect employment opportunities in fisheries sector over a period of next five years.