Oceana Seeking to Increase Horse Mackerel Quota

THE fishing group, Oceana, whose major operations are in Namibia and South Africa, is seeking to increase its horse mackerel quota in Namibia.

In 2014 season, the Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources Bernard Esau set the horse mackerel total allowable catch at 350 000 tonnes.

Oceana said in annual results for the financial year ended 30 September, that the ministry continued to allocate further quota to new rights holders which resulted in a reduction of its quota.

“This had a negative impact on the overall tonnage caught despite good catch rates. One of our three Namibian trawlers has been operating successfully in Angola for a portion of the year,” Oceana said. Apart from Oceana, several other companies including Namsov have said reduced quotas are effecting their operations.

Oceana said canned fish and fishmeal business has been restructured to allow management to effectively explore opportunities for growth both domestically and in the rest of Africa and in addition to focus on extracting efficiencies.

SEEKING MORE HORSE MACKEREL

“In Namibia we continue to seek appropriately priced horse mackerel quota to supplement fishing of owned quota. We will also continue to assess the viability of opportunities in Angola and have already commenced fishing, having obtained a mid-water trawl licence in October. In addition, we expect to commission a fishmeal plant in Angola during 2015,” the company said.

Group earnings per share for the year increased by 17% and headline earnings per share increased by 16% compared to the previous year.

Group revenue improved by 7% to N$5 billion in the financial year.

This growth was achieved from improvements in three of its four divisions, led primarily by an increase of 17% in the canned fish and fishmeal division. Growth in the second half of the year was affected by lower horse mackerel catch rates which were offset by the positive effect of a weaker rand exchange rate on exported products.

Operating profit increased by 18% compared to the previous year.

Inventory levels have decreased significantly in 2014 in line with our canned fish procurement strategy.

As a result, the group has been cash generative to the extent of N$487 million compared to N$420 million for the comparative period in 2013.

The report said canned fish and fishmeal canned fish volumes have grown from a g base of 8,6 million cartons in 2013 to 8,8 million cartons in the current year. Domestic volume growth of 3,3% has been satisfactory given current consumer pressures.

“Revenue growth for canned fish has been achieved through price adjustments necessitated by the impact of the weaker rand exchange rate on the landed cost of imported product,” the company said.

The 2014 South African total allowable catch was 90 000 tonnes. The Namibian pilchard total allowable catch for pilchard was set at 30 000 tonnes from 25 000 tonnes in 2013.

Source : The Namibian