Norwegian firms venture into Sri Lanka’s aquaculture industry

Tuesday, 13 May 2014 00:01 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Sri Lanka’s Aquaculture Industry, over the last few years has seen the entry of more than 10 Norwegian firms, thanks to the effort of the SL-Norway Business-Match-Making-Program of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce. The work undertaken by the Business-Match-Making-Program (BMMP) between the two nations have resulted in the introduction of more than 10 companies and research institutions from Norway to Sri Lanka’s aquaculture industry. The process has successfully created business matches within the most relevant segments of the value chain in aquaculture, and thus has facilitated a good foundation for further development of the industry in Sri Lanka.  Moreover, Norwegian partners of the BMMP program feels, that the current progression and keen interest from Norwegian companies may lead to more Norwegian and international companies targeting Sri Lanka, as an emerging market and future investments covering the Aquaculture sector. In a bid to enhance the ongoing work, the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, recently conducted the third and final workshop of phase 1 of implementing commercial aquaculture setups in Sri Lanka. The work shop panel consisted of Alikie Perera – Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, Harald Jelsa – AKVA Group AS, Bjørn Aspøy – Smart Farm AS, Vijayanathan – Royal Norwegian Embassy, Inge Reithaug – AB Partners, Dr. Morten Rye – Akvaforsk Genetics center AS, Børre Waagan – Plany AS and Asbjørn Drengstig – AqVisor AS. It was led by the Norwegian aquaculture expert, Asbjørn Drengstig, who emphasised the need for Sri Lanka to come up with a ‘Master Plan for Aquaculture Development’, in the country. Drengstig says, the biggest issue hampering the local aquaculture industry at present, is a lack of a value chain approach in development. According to him, Aquaculture breeding programs, feed development, legal framework, commercial technologies, practical know-how at commercial levels, diseases and market research, are areas the local sector will have to focus on. The Norwegian expert believes, if Sri Lanka is to develop its aquaculture Industry revitalisation of the Chilaw/Puttalam areas aquaculture industry, enhancing the commercial cage farming taking place in Trincomalee, and developing the inland areas suitable for aquaculture in the Batticaloa areas are vital. Drengstig confirmed Norwegian support towards the above efforts would be readily available, if the country needs to utilise them. The workshop was held in Colombo.