Thu, 25 May 2000

Cilacap fish production drops

CILACAP, Central Java: Fish production in Cilacap regency has dropped drastically due to vanishing plankton and the depreciation of rupiah, an official said recently.

Dwi Yuliono, the head of infrastructure and production at the Nusantara port here, said that between April 1999 to April 2000 fish products totaled 371 tons, dropping from 464 tons in the previous fiscal year.

"It caused a decline in revenue from the fishing sector, from Rp 2.6 billion to Rp 1.2 billion," he said.

He expressed optimism, however, that the fishing industry still had tremendous potential of being the regency's major income source.

He claimed that the Cilacap sea could produce 63,930 tons a year, but only 60 percent of it was exploited due to limited human resources and equipment.

"There are only 21,000 fishermen here, while ideally we need 50,000 fishermen. Our fishermen also lack modern boats and equipment," he said. (45/sur)