Department of Agriculture (DA) Secretary William Dar has approved the importation of 60,000 metric tons (MT) of fish for the first quarter of 2022 to address the shortage in fish supply caused by Typhoon Odette last year.
In a statement, Dar said the importation was covered by the Certificate of Necessity to Import (CNI) 60,000 MT of small pelagic fish that was also agreed by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR).
“We are working on the DA-BFAR’s projection of a 119k-MT fish supply deficiency this quarter. We are bolstering the aquaculture sector to close gaps in fish production and sustainably improve our catch,” Dar said in an interview over Laging Handa on Jan. 18.
Based on damage assessment by the DA, it stated that fishery is the most affected sector in the aftermath of Typhoon Odette with around P4 billion reported damage and losses.
A portion worth P50 million of the department’s P 1 billion Quick Response Fund has been set aside to distribute marine diesel or gasoline engines, relief items such as canned tuna, sardines, and frozen fish, and the construction of long-lasting fiberglass fishing boats following Odette.