Kochi: India's seafood exports stood at 2,51,735 metric tonnes, valued at Rs 9,066.06 crore (US$1.42 billion) in the first quarter of the current fiscal, according to the Marine Products Exports Development Authority (MPEDA).
During the same period in the last fiscal it stood at 2,01,223 MT, worth $1.17 billion.
USA and Southeast Asia retained their position as the major importers of India's seafood, followed by the European Union (EU) and Japan, while the demand from China saw a healthy surge during the period.
Frozen shrimp continued to be the top export item of the marine products basket, accounting for a share of 50.66 percent in quantity and 74.90 percent of the total earnings in dollar terms. Shrimp exports increased by 20.87 percent in terms of quantity and 21.64 percent in dollar terms.
Frozen squid was the second largest export item, accounting for 7.82 percent in quantity and 5.81 percent in dollar earnings, registering a growth of 40.25 per cent in terms of dollar value.
Besides frozen shrimp and frozen squid, India's other major seafood product was frozen fish, which recorded a growth of 24.96 percent, 17.55 percent and 21.75 percent in terms of quantity, rupee value and dollar earnings, respectively.
"Healthy harvests of shrimp, drastic reduction in the rejection rate by the EU countries, sustained measures to ensure quality and improved infrastructure facilities for production of value added products were chiefly responsible for India's surge in seafood exports," said A. Jayathilak, chairman MPEDA.
"What is satisfying is that growth in exports was achieved in the face of continued uncertainties in the global seafood trade," added the chairman.
USA imported 54,344 MT of Indian seafood worth $499.28 million, accounting for a share of 35.05 percent in dollar terms.
Southeast Asia continued to be the second largest destination of India's marine products, with a share of 31.26 percent in dollar terms, followed by the EU (14.70 per cent), Japan (6.68 percent), the Middle East (3.47 percent), China (3.06 per cent) and other countries (5.79 percent).
The EU continued to be the third largest destination for Indian marine products with a share of 15.23 percent in quantity.
Japan was the fourth largest destination for Indian seafood, accounting for 6.68 percent in earnings and 7.26 percent in quantity terms.