Singapore is now the world's top exporting country for the global trade of ornamental fish, with exports amounting to nearly $74 million according to the latest UN Comtrade (2013) figures. To further cement Singapore's status as an industry leader, AVA works closely with the industry to improve farming processes and ensure excellent fish health standards.
AVA supports the industry through the provision of technical expertise and funding to help the sector bridge gaps and mitigate challenges. AVA's Agriculture Productivity Fund, for example, consists of schemes to provide farmers with financial assistance to improve productivity. Farmers can use this assistance to procure equipment and hi-tech automated integrated systems.
The call for high animal health standards, an innovative spirit, and efforts to boost efficiency was also highlighted at the International Ornamental Fish and Accessories Exhibition (Aquarama) held from 28 to 31 May 2015 in Singapore.
Opening the event, Minister of State (MOS) for National Development and Defence Dr Maliki Bin Osman quoted the example of Qian Hu Corporation Ltd, which tapped on SPRING Singapore's Capability Development Grant (CDG) to develop an intensive multi-tier automated recirculation fish tank system. "This new system doubles the farm's fish-holding capacity, yet uses only half the amount of water and requires less than half the manpower previously required to operate. I strongly urge other ornamental fish farms to take bold steps in this direction as well."
To further support land intensification, Dr Maliki also announced AVA's plans to explore the development of a multi-storey building for flatted farming, akin to a flatted factory.
"The study is still ongoing and is at its conceptual stages. If successful, such a project would be a game-changer, not only providing more space for ornamental fish farming, but also opening up more opportunities for shared facilities and resources," he continued.