The government of Bangladesh has unveiled an ambitious plan to establish a smart city dedicated to fisheries in Chakaria Upazila, located in the Cox’s Bazar district. The primary objective behind this initiative is to harness the immense potential of the blue economy through marine fisheries.
During a roundtable discussion, Fisheries and Livestock Minister SM Rezaul Karim highlighted the direction provided by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to the fisheries ministry to explore the untapped opportunities of the blue economy. The government is committed to enhancing fish production and improving the livelihoods of fishermen.
The event was part of a seven-year project to promote sustainable coastal and marine fisheries in the capital city. During the event, the Minister emphasized the importance of protecting marine biodiversity and reducing pollution in order to achieve sustainable development. The project aims to create more job opportunities in the fisheries sector and increase exports of fish and seafood products.
Minister Rezaul Karim further emphasized the department’s efforts to ensure good governance in marine fishing through the implementation of a smart vessel management system. This system incorporates the use of smart cards for fishermen as well as a comprehensive database and surveillance system that is linked to the Bangabandhu-1 satellite.
Furthermore, the minister mentioned a cluster-based service that has been specifically developed to assist shrimp farmers in the Khulna region. Since its initiation in July 2018, this project has played a pivotal role in improving the livelihoods of farmers across 16 districts in the country.
The roundtable event also featured Fisheries and Livestock Secretary Nahid Rashid as a special guest. Other notable figures in attendance included Additional Secretary Abdul Quaiyum, Fisheries Department Director General Yeahia Mahmud, and Project Director Abdul Alim.
Deputy Project Director Manish Mandal presented a comprehensive overview of the latest developments in the marine fisheries sector during the roundtable. Mandal emphasized the successful integration of fishing vessels into a digital management system. Additionally, exporters have started implementing quick response codes on shrimp products, providing consumers with detailed information about production and farmers.
He highlighted the importance of these innovations in promoting the country’s brand internationally. Furthermore, he mentioned the government’s support for research on canned Hilsa fish, aiming to popularize this product in foreign markets.
Through the establishment of a smart city for fisheries and the implementation of various technological advancements, Bangladesh is making significant strides towards tapping into the vast potential of the blue economy, ensuring sustainable fish production, and improving the lives of fishermen and farmers alike.
The government of Bangladesh has also been actively promoting the export of fish and fish products to international markets. This has led to increased demand for Bangladeshi seafood, creating new opportunities for local fishermen and boosting the country’s economy.