Brunei Darussalam’s fisheries industry is set to increase production by 2035 and boost the contribution of fisheries exports to the national economy, following an agreement signed between the Department of Fisheries under the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT) and Muara Port Company Sdn Bhd (MPC) on December 22, 2020.
Under this agreement, MPC will develop new facilities at the Muara Fish Landing Complex. This includes modern terminal equipment to unload catch from fishing vessels as well as inshore and offshore fish cage farms. The equipment will also aid in the loading and unloading of basic supplies on fishing vessels departing from the jetty.
According to Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Ali bin Apong, the facilities will boost the key performance indicator (KPI) in the fisheries sector production from 100 million in 2019 to 175 million in 2022.
He said that MPC will start the project in January 2021. Over BND14 million will be invested by MPC into the first phase of the project.
Once completed, the public-private partnership project will generate over 200 job opportunities for locals. Facilities such as water, ice and oil will also be provided for fishing vessels. Services will be provided by selected companies for fish processing activities in the complex area.
The minister noted that more vessels will operate through MPC’s international network, which will invite foreign investments in aquaculture and fish processing.
Brunei has made significant strides in the aquaculture industry as an attractive foreign direct investment (FDI) destination. In 2019, two notable projects were signed between Brunei and Singapore.
The first project is the local production of Atlantic salmon, signed between the Strategic Development Capital Fund under the Ministry of Finance and Economy and 8F Asset Management Pte Ltd.
The Atlantic salmon will be produced in Brunei using a land-based farming facility equipped with a recirculating aquaculture system (RAS), with the capacity of 10,000 tonnes whole-fishequivalent per annum.
Once operational, the project is expected to generate 145 employment opportunities. In addition, the facility will supply salmon products such as fillets and smoked salmon domestically and regionally.
The second project was signed between the Department of Fisheries under MPRT and Barramundi Asia (B) Sdn Bhd. It includes the establishment of a world-class hatchery in Brunei for the production of juvenile barramundi, also known as Asia sea bass.
Barramundi Asia will invest BND18 million for the culture of barramundi in offshore cages. By 2024, the project is expected to produce 4,000 metric tonnes of barramundi.
By 2032, the farm will be fully operational, capable of producing 36,000 metric tonnes of barramundi worth over BND320 million. The project will significantly boost Brunei’s total fisheries production and export. It will also create spin-off businesses in the country, such as the logistics and services sectors.
Golden Corporation Sdn Bhd is the leading seafood company in Brunei with the organic blue shrimp as its primary product. The company started off in 2002 with a hatchery for shrimp and fish fry before expanding into developing shrimp farms, fishmeal and feed mill plants. In 2012, Golden Corporation established the first integrated seafood processing plant in Brunei. The plant produces frozen fish and shrimp, surimi, fish meal, fish oil and aquatic feed. In addition to producing blue shrimps, Golden Corporation has also invested in fishing vessels capable of operating in deeper marine zone areas of Brunei. This allows Golden Corporation to catch high-grade yellowfin tuna and skipjacks. Golden Corporation has successfully marketed products to international markets such as Australia, Japan, China, Taiwan and the European Union.
Pure Fresh International Holdings Limited set up its first Southeast Asian processing centre near Muara Port, in collaboration with Ghanim International Corporation Sdn Bhd. Costing more than BND10 million, the processing centre has been in operation since April 2018, processing blue shrimps for export to China.
On December 13, 2018, Pure Fresh and Ghanim signed an agreement for the development of aquaculture and exports to China. Over BND400 million will be invested for the project over a period of five years. Its main product, frozen blue shrimp, will be primarily exported to China. The project development plan includes the establishment of aquaculture farms, a hatchery for the breeding of blue shrimps and a largescale seafood processing centre.
Yamako Pacific (Brunei) Sdn Bhd is a joint venture between Brunei and Japanese-centric Yamako Pacific Group, known for collaborating and catapulting local industry players to international standards.
Operating since April 2018, Yamako Pacific (Brunei) is a local seafood processing company that specialises in processing yellowfin and skipjack tuna into high quality products. The company exported its first container to Japan in July 2018 and doubled its exports the following month. Its proton freezer maintains the quality and freshness of the tuna to be exported, ensuring customer satisfaction. Besides Japan, Yamako Pacific (Brunei) is also looking to break into new export markets in the future, such as China, Europe and the United States.
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