Seafood consumption on the increase
This article was featured in EUROFISH Magazine 1 / 2021.
Ukraine celebrates its 30th anniversary of independence this year. As a young and developing country it is still implementing the reforms designed to build a modern and efficient state. Initial efforts catalysed the signing of the Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement in 2014, which entered into force in 2017 and which, when fully ratified, offers Ukraine duty-free access to the EU market, political and financial support, and access to EU research and other programmes. In return, Ukraine shall continue more firmly on its path of reform particularly in the legislative and judicial area, economic regulation, and finance.
Ukraine has 1.5m ha of water surface that can be used for fish farming. This includes freshwater reservoirs, lakes, and ponds as well as estuaries called limans in the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov. The aquaculture sector in the country farms fish in different ways, in ponds, cages, and in recirculation systems.
The loss of Crimea had a substantial impact on the fisheries sector in the Ukraine. According to the State Agency for Fisheries catches plummeted by 60% from 225 thousand tonnes in 2013 (including Crimea) to 91 thousand tonnes in 2014 (without Crimea). But Ukraine has significant natural resources even without Crimea. These include inland waters (rivers, lakes, ponds, reservoirs) amounting to 1.3m ha, as well as marine waters in the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov. Altogether, Ukrainian waters, both fresh and marine, have an area of 10.4m ha.