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2021 September 20

Investment quotas allow for modernization of Far East Basin’s fishing fleet by 70%

Photo by IAA PortNews

The second phase of providing investment quotas known as ‘keel quotas’ is being prepared in Russia. It is to cover the construction of 30 fishing ships of various types. Meanwhile, Rosrybolovstvo (Russian Federal Fisheries Agency) is against imposing any standard designs of ships hoping for development of domestic designs. Providing of the new fleet with repair facilities is a separate problem.

The second phase of providing fishing quotas to those building new fishing and transport ships or developing the related shore infrastructure is being prepared in Russia. As Ilya Shestakov, Deputy Minister of Agriculture, head of Rosrybolovstvo (Russian Federal Fisheries Agency), told journalists when answering the question of IAA PortNews at the Global Fishery Forum and Seafood Expo Russia 2021, 30 fishing ships of various types are to be built for the Far East basin over the second phase of the project which foresees providing of fish quotas for construction of new fishing ships and facilities. According to him, this number will include 15 large capacity ships and transport ships allowing for modernization of the Far East Basin’s fishing fleet by 65-70%.

The second phase of the investment quotas programme comes in response to the need to upgrade the fishing fleet of the Far East Basin and to develop the required shore infrastructure including refrigerating facilities. Phase I of the programme will allow for modernization of only 40% of the Far East Basin fleet. (and 80% of the Northern Basin fleet).

Construction of processing plants and port facilities in the framework of the project’s second phase (planned for 6 years) is to begin in 2022, construction of vessels – in 2023 although the beginning can be postponed due to delayed shipbuilding projects.

The official also told about the plans on liberalization of the regulatory framework by lifting some of the requirements foreseen for fishery companies applying for quotas.

As of today, construction of fishing ships is based on 16 designs, mostly the Norwegian ones. That entails certain problems following shipbuilders: numerous lead ships and design adjustment to meet RS requirements.

When commenting on the question of IAA PortNews about new designs of fishing ships, Ilya Shestakov emphasized that Rosrybolovstvo is against insisting on certain standard designs. According to the speaker, the second phase is expected to see the companies involved in the first one. The head of the Agency also expressed his hope that Russian design institutes which accumulated experience in adjusting foreign designs to meet RS requirements would be able to offer their own design solutions.

“Through implementation of investment quota programme we will get an advanced and efficient fishing fleet”, said Ilya Shestakov.

Nevertheless, it is not enough to build dozens of ships. High quality repair facilities are needed as well. According to the head Rosrybolovstvo, it is reasonable to build ship repair clusters in Murmansk and Vladivostok. According to the Deputy Minister, it is a task for United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC).

“Through implementation of investment quota programme we will get an advanced and efficient fishing fleet”

The ship repair market stakeholders also emphasize the need to improve tax and customs legislation. As the Marketing Department of Kanonersky Ship Repair Plant CJSC told IAA PortNews, streamlining of customs procedures for clearance of spare parts, materials and equipment should be discussed with the Federal Customs Service.

The plans on construction of a repair facility for fishing ships in Arkhangelsk has been announced recently. Investments will total about RUB 2 billion, Yevgeny Avtushenko, Depyty Prime Minister of the Arkhangelsk Region, said at the working meeting with the Artic Fishery Cluster as part of the business programme of the 4th Global Fishery Forum.

“It has been decided to elaborate the initial programme for creation of a ship repair center. The reason behind it is to expand it with extra essential activities including construction of a railway line and acquisition of a floating dock”, said Yevgeny Avtushenko.

According to him, the regional government and the fishing companies are currently discussing possible and interesting measures of state support and development of beneficial tax treatment mechanisms.

Ilya Shestakov says that the lower house of Parliament is to consider the second phase of the investment quotas programme during its autumn session.

By Vitaly Chernov

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