The conference was organized by the Sri Lanka Export Development Board, INFOFISH Malaysia, Ornamental Fish International (OFI). Ministry of Fisheries & Aquatic Resources Development (MOFARD), Ministry of Primary Industries, National Aquaculture Development Authority of Sri Lanka (NAQDA), and Live Tropical Fish Exporters Association also extended collaboration as national partners of the Conference.
The 1st edition was held in Sri Lanka in year 2014. Sri Lanka has been chosen as the venue to hold the 2nd edition of this prestigious event in 2017, in recognition of it’s role as one of the pioneering country of global marine ornamental fish trade and also as key supplier of the freshwater ornamental fish to the global market.
The conference has brought together the world major ornamental supplying nations exporters, buyers relevant trade organizations government institutions professionals etc to discuss the current issues and challenges in the industry.
Sixteen renowned international speakers spoke at the Conference, covering all the important aspects of the ornamental fish industry including trade and technology challenges, developments and innovations in breeding, rearing and feed technology; both in marine and freshwater ornamental fish sector: as well as the prevention and control of diseases.Some of the pressing global issues will include current and pending rules and regulations, environmental issues and the certifications.
Mr Shane Willis, President of Ornamental Fish International (OFI) visited Sri Lanka as the Chairman of the International Ornamental Fish Conference 2017.
A farm visit for international participants has also been arranged for participants to the Rambadagalla Ornamental Fish Breeding and Training Centre. It was an unique opportunity for participants to witness the ongoing research activities in this state-owned centre, including fish breeding, rearing and tissue culture of aquatic plants.
There are about 80 ornamental fish exporting companies in Sri Lanka. Major buyers for Sri Lankan ornamental fish are the USA, Japan and the European Union (UK, Germany, France). This sector is prominent in the rural areas contributing to increase household income with high net foreign exchange earnings to the country. Sri Lankan ornamental fish assortment for the international market includes wild caught marine, brackish-water and freshwater species as well as captive bred freshwater fish. Out of the freshwater species exported from Sri Lanka, about 60-70% consists of famous fancy Guppies. These are highly recognized in the international market for its strength and high diversity when compared to other countries. Sri Lanka’s export of Ornamental Fish in 2016 was US$ 13 Mn.