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Floods drive fishing sector

Floods drive fishing sector

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Men fish on the Tonle Sap river in Phnom Penh last week.

Increased fishing yields due to floods have led to an increase in rental fees for the Kingdom’s fishing lots compared to 2010, according to official data.

Revenues from bidding on 52 fishing lots in Phnom Penh and four other provinces increased by US$735,000 year to date, Nao Thuok, director general of fisheries at the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, said.

Soaring fish populations in some of the country’s heavily flooded provinces have led to bold bidding from fishermen, Nao Thuok said.

“The increase in fish outputs has led [fishing lot renters] to dare to pay high prices,” he said, adding that this year’s high-priced lots were in Kandal, Prey Veng, Kampong Cham and Takeo provinces, as well as Phnom Penh.

Seventy-three of Cambodia’s fishing lots were already under contract prior to the bidding, while 35 were closed this year because of the use of illegal fishing tools, Nao Thuok said.

Fishing season began yesterday. Nao Thuok reckoned the price of fish would be lower than last year given the increased supply. Total rental revenues from all of Cambodia’s 160 fishing lots were $1.96 million in 2010, he said.

Lov Hing, who rents a fishing lot in Kandal province’s Koh Thom district, said he expected large increases in fish populations in return for the higher price of his lot.

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