Saudi Investment Forum for Aquaculture was launched today 8 April 2019 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates under the theme “Invest Saudi”.
The forum is a platform to strengthen the partnerships of the Saudi private sector, and foreign investments to collaborate on aquaculture projects and fish feed plants, Dr. Ali bin Mohammad Alshaikhi, the Chief Executive Officer of the National Fisheries Development Program said “The forum is targeting the introduction of fourth generation of industry into the aquaculture sector”. It is also part of the efforts to increase the production of marine products (assorted varieties) from 100 thousand tons in 2020 and to 600 thousand tons in 2030.
Dr. Alshaikhi stated that ready investment portfolios related to aquaculture sector will be distributed during the forum. They will exceed 30 investment opportunities from fish farming in floating cages, shrimp farming, fish feed plants, and manufacturing and packaging industry of fish and shrimp.
He added: “The initiatives of National Industrial development and Logistics Program that were launched recently by HRH prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defense include 5 pioneering initiatives for the development and improvement of aquaculture industry, achieving food security, achieve sustainability in marine food, development of rural coastal areas, and conservation of natural resources by decreasing high demand on fisheries. Dr. Alshaikhi pointed out that a budget of nearly 1.3 billion Saudi Riyals is allocated to support the National Fisheries Development Program and the sector through investment in infrastructure, research, development, marketing campaigns, biosecurity systems, and fish health and safety centers. He added: “The aquaculture sector is considered among the most attractive sectors for investment, and is currently the fastest growing sector among others with growth rate of 6% annually.. The Kingdom is considered a source for exporting high quality marine food to the European Union, and South East Asia. Also, it has the capacity to increase production and meet the requirements of the market. Saudi Arabia is also recognized globally for its commitment with quality standards with its internationally recognised Bio Security programand its aims to have all operating companies in the sector to be Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certified.
From his part, His Excellency Mohamed Bin Obaid Al Mazrowei -President of the Arab Authority for Agricultural Investment & Development (AAAID) said “The organizing of the forum comes as part of the AAAID efforts to strengthen agriculture investments on general, and aquaculture in specific. It also aims to develop the industries based on it in Arab World in general and the Gulf region in specific.
Dr. Al Mazrowei added: “The forum is so important as considered a significant strategic platform to introduce the ready investment portfolio in aquaculture sector and the unique initiatives that represent AAAID aspirations to improve aquaculture sector and support the investment opportunities for local and international companies in this field toward developing a strategy of food security based on Saudi Vision 2030.
The AAAID President stated that the forum is an opportunity to exchange the best practices and experiences in aquaculture sector among investors and a meeting point to present fish farming and aquaculture projects.
It worth mentioning that the forum is organized under the patronage of National Industrial Development and Logistics Program in Saudi Arabia, in cooperation with the Arab Authority for Agricultural Investment & Development (AAAID), National Fisheries Development Program in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority, and Saudi Aquaculture Society, with the participation of Saudi Industrial Development Fund and Agriculture Development Fund.