Historically, fishing was second only to farming as an
economic activity in pre-oil Oman. Both the Gulf of Oman
Arabian Sea offer a variety of catch, including sardines,
bluefish, mackerel, shark, tuna, abalone, lobsters, and
Fishermen harvest their catch in the waters near the
the traditional, small seagoing canoe, to which an
has been added.
The fishing sector (along with agriculture) is
of the most promising areas for commercial attention and
for the highest non-oil export revenue. However, sales in
totaled RO17.3 million, dwarfed by oil export earnings of
billion. The GCC provided the largest fish export market.
fishing sector also provided employment opportunities to
fishermen registered in 1990, of whom 18,546 were employed
traditional fisheries and 750 in industrial fisheries.
agriculture, fishing has been affected by the diminishing
of people employed in the sector. As increasing numbers of
fishermen turn to more remunerative employment, there has
gradual decrease in the amount of fish caught.
The government has stressed modernizing and expanding
fishing industry and developing its export potential. The
United States-Oman Commission funded the Oman Fisheries
Development and Management Project to strengthen the
administrative, and management skills of the Directorate
of Fisheries Resources (DGFR). In strengthening the DGFR,
government hopes to increase private-sector confidence in
fishing industry and, in the long term, to create
led development of the industry.
The government is following a dual
improve the capacity of the DGFR to manage Oman's fishing
resources and, externally, to provide incentives for
remain in their occupations. The government provides
purchase fiberglass boats and outboard engines; to
workshops, cold storage facilities, and jetties along the
coastline; and to establish companies to market fish both
domestically and internationally.
Data as of January 1993