Weather prompts fishing ban that sees market prices rise sharply
FUJAIRAH // Poor weather conditions in recent days have halted fishing off the east coast and led to an increase in fish prices.
All fishing activities have been on hold since Thursday owing to unstable weather and high waves, which in turn led to fish prices increasing by as much as 25 per cent.
The fishing ban also affected fishermen, who are losing an estimated Dh4,000 a day.
“There is nothing we can do right now except wait for the wind to calm down. Each one of us should have made Dh4,000 to Dh5,000 per day because it’s the time of the year when we catch many kinds of fish,” said Jassim Ahmad, a 57-year-old Emirati fisherman in Fujairah.
“We didn’t go fishing since last Thursday and they told us that the wind might calm down after Tuesday. If the weather continues like this, we will have issues paying our bills and wages.”
The head of Dibba Fishermen Association highlighted the danger of going to sea when high winds cause high waves.
“It’s considered risky, that’s why they banned any fishing activity,” said Suleiman Al Khuddam.
“Of course there will be an increase in the fish prices due to the lack of supply, but the market is receiving fish from other emirates and that should cover consumers’ needs.”
Fishmongers reported a shortage of fresh catch and rising prices.
“There is a shortage in many kinds of fish, like Sultan Ibrahim (red mullet) and al kanaad (mackerel), which are considered the most wanted kinds of fish in the area,” said Hussain K B, from India. “Almost all the fish prices have increased between Dh5 and Dh10 per kilo. A kilo of hamour was Dh25 and now it’s between Dh30 and Dh35; al shari (emperor) was Dh20 and now you can buy a kilo for Dh25, if you can find it.”
Another fishmonger said that customers had dried up as prices had risen.
“Few people visit the market these days because there is nothing much to offer and they are afraid that they will buy frozen fish and not fresh ones. Most of the fish are fresh but it has ice on it because they were shipped from other emirates, but people think they are frozen,” said Abdulrahman V K, from India.
The National Centre of Meteorology and Seismology said seas would become moderate by Tuesday night in the Arabian Gulf and slight to moderate in the Sea of Oman. The strong winds of recent days were expected to dissipate on Tuesday.
Updated: December 13, 2016 04:00 AM