With its annual 800,000 tons of aquaculture production in the past three years, Türkiye has ranked first among European Union countries, according to data from the Agriculture and Forestry Ministry.
Some 328,000 tons of this production in 2021 came from hunting and 472,000 tons from aquafarming. As production rose, the industry’s exports also increased. Some $1.4 billion worth of 239,000 tons of aquaculture products were exported last year, while the country’s imports amounted to 105,000 tons or $217 million which made the country a net exporter – $1.2 billion – of aquaculture products.
In the production of beam, bass and steelhead fish, Türkiye ranked first and second in the world, respectively.
The industry shipped its products to 106 nations last year with 55 percent of all exports going to the EU, while Türkiye imported from 75 countries in 2021, mostly feeder fish and some mollusk species that are produced in the country.
There are a total of 15,300 fishing boats in Türkiye, with more than 1,600 of those are 12-meter and longer in size. According to Eurostat, there are around 75,000 fishing boats in the EU member nations of which 11,000 are boats 12-meter or longer.
In order to support the industry, the government granted special consumption tax exemptions worth 10.2 billion Turkish Liras and 7.2 billion liras in financial aid for aquafarming in the past 20 years.
Since 2020, authorities have also been providing support to fishermen catching predator toadfish.
In 2021, 936 million liras of subsidized loans were extended to the aquaculture sector, while the size of those loans amounted to 13.9 billion liras since 2002.