DOING BUSINESS IN MALDIVES

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Agribusiness

Fishery sector

The Maldives is the only country in the world that can exclusively and rightfully claim to be a fully sustainable 100% pole and line ?eco-friendly? skipjack tuna fishing resource.

For generations the Maldives have employed this traditional way of fishing in the crystal clear waters along its tropical archipelago , which not only preser ves a healthy, safe and sustainable habitat for dolphins, whales, turtles and other marine species and birds, but equally recognises the demands of their burgeoning tourist industry and ensures a peaceful coexistence of the two.


The Maldives, unlike other tuna fishing countries, have always resisted the commercially driven temptation of unsustainable technological enhanced fishing practices, in deference of harvesting their natural resource by the age-old tradition of pole and line fishing, which has been handed down from father to son with a heritage dating back to the 14th century.

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The Maldivian government places high priority to investments in the area of value addition, research and development in the fisheries industry.


With an approximate employment in the fisheries sector counting all up and down stream linkages of 35,000, the contribution made to the Maldivian economy is paramount.


The geography of Maldives makes characteristics make marine resources the most important natural endowment.


Approximately 94% of all catch in the Maldives is accounted for by local fishermen using pole and line to catch mostly skipjack tuna. Exports of fish products make up 99.5% of all exports in value terms, tuna products constitute 86%. In addition, the catch effort for local fishermen (near coast fisheries) is almost exclusively skipjack tuna.


High sea EEZ fisheries are licensed to 43 international fishing companies mostly applying long line technology. Regulation is done by catch quotas and allows only long lining and pole and line methods. Application of these sustainable methods makes Maldives fisheries extremely ecological.


The Maldives guarantees environmentally friendly fisheries mechanism and there is huge potential for eco-fisheries, diversification into other marine catch or aquaculture products will be investigated based on a demand driven (market demand) approach.


Agriculture


Agriculture is still traditional in nature and is practiced mostly as means of subsistence. It is mainly practiced as a family activity with minimal use of hired labor. Semi commercial and commercial farms employ expatriate labor. Women play a major role in farming activities. It is believed that domestic agricultural production covers only about 10 percent of the country’s food requirement and the rest, including staple food items, are imported.


Since Maldives is a net importing country, there is high scope for investment in the research and technological development for agriculture. The Commercialization of agriculture has enabled the potential for increasing efficiency and productivity in agri-business is considerably high. The two fundamental markets for horticultural products which could be exploited above that is being done by the locals. The first market is the over 100 resort tourist islands averaging 700,000 in number of annual arrivals. Another key sector is the number of local supermarkets Male’ and the other populated Atolls in the north and south.


Through new product development and appropriate application of technology can lead to numerous potential for investment returns. With foreign investment in the sector, subsequent improvements in the area could boost the Agricultural production as a whole in the country.