The Maldives Economic Council has decided to decrease the price paid by the Maldives Industrial Fisheries Company (MIFCO) for fish from MVR 25 to MVR 20 per kilogram. This decision, while not yet officially announced, is reportedly motivated by the country’s current economic conditions.
Established in 2012, the Economic Council advises the President on measures to address economic challenges and is currently chaired by Economic Minister Mohammed Saeed. Decisions require Presidential approval for implementation.
The previous fish purchase price of MVR 25 was instituted by former President Solih in mid-September, coinciding with the presidential election period. Campaign promises from various candidates focused on improving financial outcomes for the fishing industry. Despite this, fishermen’s associations have voiced concerns about fixed pricing models.
Since the price increase, Ensis Fisheries, a major private fisheries company, has halted fish purchases and closed its canning factory. The Fisheries Ministry acknowledges outstanding payments to fishermen totaling MVR 200 million, inherited by the current government. Fisheries Minister Ahmed Shiyam is working with President Muizzu to resolve the situation and provide timely payments to fishermen within two weeks of their catch being purchased.