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September 13, 2013


China Investing in Ecuadorian Shrimp Farms


Chinese seafood firms are racing to invest in Ecuadorian shrimp farms in a bid to secure supplies and insulate themselves from soaring shrimp prices.  Li Kun, sales manager at Beijing-based East China Seas, said, “The prices in Ecuador are so high right now, and even though China is able to afford these prices, it’s necessary to secure stable access to supplies by investing in Ecuador.”


Li says his firm has also invested in Venezuela and Panama, but declined to provide figures. “The prices being paid in India are very high for what is sometimes low quality….  We need to secure quality,” he said.


Speaking at Seafood Expo Asia in Hong Kong (September 2–4, 2013), Francisco Vanoni, an executive at Omarsa, one of the top five shrimp exporting companies in Ecuador, said Ecuador’s shrimp exports to China have soared in recent years.  Omarsa, which has an office in Beijing, ships 45 percent of its exports to China, up to 100,000 metric tons a month.  “Compared to Asia we are not cheap…our prices depend on presentation—head on or not.…  Shipments to the European Union have traditionally been value added, but China, which demands whole...shrimp,” said Vanoni.  “Asia overtook Europe as the main destination for Ecuadorian shrimp exports in 2011, and we don’t see that status quo changing anytime soon….  Diversity of export markets helps maintain the stability of prices.”


Ecuador has very good political relations with China, which has extended financing to the country through the China Development Bank, in part through energy deals that will result in China importing petroleum from Ecuador, one of very few countries granting visa-free access to Chinese citizens.


Source:  Editor, Sean Murphy (  Chinese Firms Secure Shrimp Supply in Ecuador.  Mark Godfrey.  September 11, 2013.


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