The country's exports of marine products fell 10.88 per cent to USD 5.96 billion (Rs 43,717.26 crore) during 2020-21 due to the pandemic and sluggish overseas markets, the commerce ministry said on Thursday.
It said the US, China and the European Union were the leading importers, while frozen shrimp retained its position as the major export item, followed by frozen fish.
In 2019-20, India exported 12,89,651 tonne of seafood worth Rs 46,662.85 crore (USD 6.68 billion). It was 11,49,341 tonne in 2020-21.
" The COVID-19 pandemic and sluggish overseas markets cast their shadow over India's resurgent seafood sector as the country exported 11,49,341 tonne of marine products worth Rs 43,717.26 crore (USD 5.96 billion) during 2020-21, registering a contraction of 10.88 per cent as compared to a year earlier," it said.
Frozen shrimp contributed 51.36 per cent in quantity and 74.31 per cent of the total dollar earnings. The US remained its largest importer (2,72,041 tonne), followed by China (1,01,846 tonne), the EU (70,133 tonne), Japan (40,502 tonne), South East Asia (38,389 tonne), and the Middle East (29,108 tonne).
However, shrimp exports declined by 9.47 per cent to USD 4.42 billion.
The US, with imports of 2,91,948 tonne, continued to be the major importer of Indian seafood with a share of 41.15 per cent in dollar terms, the statement said.
"China, with an import of 2,18,343 tonne of seafood worth USD 939.17 million, remained the second largest market with a share of 15.77 per cent in dollar earnings and 19 per cent in quantity terms," it said.
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