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S. Asia fisheries sector loss at $520 m: FAO

Our Bureau

Mumbai , Feb. 18

THE Food and Agriculture Organisation's (FAO) latest estimate for direct losses in the fisheries sector in the South Asian region as a result of the tsunami is around $520 million (Rs 2,200 crore).

According to FAO's latest information 111,073 fishing vessels were destroyed or damaged with an estimated replacement cost of $61 million (Rs 260 crore); 36,235 engines were lost or damaged beyond repair with replacement costs projected at $73 million (Rs 310 crore); 1.7 million units of fishing gear (nets, tackle, and similar equipment) were destroyed with an estimated replacement cost of $86 million (Rs 370 crore).

Cost of repairs of other damages to the fisheries sector, such as to aquaculture operations, fishing industry infrastructure and harbours are estimated to be in excess of $200 million.

FAO said these figures refer to only those seven countries most affected by the tsunami: India, Indonesia, Maldives, Myanmar, Somalia, Sri Lanka and Thailand.

The organisation said it is working with governments to plan the long-term recovery of fisheries and aquaculture, including creation of multi-year technical assistance and planning programmes and continued delivery of replacement fishing vessels and equipment.

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