DOHA: Fishing boats and trawlers are being fitted with electronic devices that will help officials at the Fisheries Department to monitor their location while they are in the sea.
So far 427 boats and trawlers have been fitted with such devices during an initial phase of the novel project.
The department has also prepared an extensive database on the fishing areas in the country’s territorial waters and the available fish resources that can be commercially exploited.
The database also analyses the types of fish available and it is to be linked to an international database.
Meanwhile, the department is giving finishing touches to a technical guidebook on sweet water fish farming.
A project has been launched and production has begun.
Statistics reveal that fish production and consumption in the country have been on the rise.
Local fish production in 2012 was 11,274 tonnes, while a little more than 1,000 tonnes of fish were exported. Fish imports totalled 3,823 tonnes in that year.
Fish consumption in the year was 14,078 tonnes.
The department, in crackdowns last year, came across 14 cases of fish being sold in places not designated for the purpose.
It also detected other violations of the provisions of the law that regulates fishing and caught people who were using instruments and devices that are banned in fishing.
The department last year issued licences to 349 boats while 329 boats renewed their permits.
Some 788 fishermen were issued licences to operate whereas 365 fishermen renewed their licences. Some 59 vehicles were issued licences to transport fish stocks.
Besides, 107 traditional dhows were issued licences last year for fishing.