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Kyokuyo Suisan's Far Seas Purse Seiner "Dainana Wakabamaru" Completed

October 6, 2009

200 People Visit Ceremonial Event

Kyokuyo Suisan of the Kyokuyo Group completed the construction of a far seas purse seiner, the "Dainana Wakabamaru" (760 tons); the company opened the ship to the public at the port of Yaizu and invited 200 related people to a ceremony at the Yaizu Grand Hotel in the City of Yaizu on October 4.


The following is a speech made by Kyokuyo President Kiyokazu Fukui:


"I would like to send my deep appreciation to the Fisheries Agency, involved industries, as well as the construction company who were part of the construction of the ship. Our company runs tuna aquaculture business in Shikoku and additionally built the ship in order to secure access to natural resources and to strengthen the total power of bonito-tuna business."


"The constructions of overseas purse seiners started with the Fifty-Fifth Hakunyu-Maru in 1973. At the ninth vessel we could construct a large purse seiner that we had longed for. This ship is a star ship not only for our company but also for the industry; and therefore, we must all unite for the success of the industry. We will take on the improvements of fuel and fishing efficiencies, prevention of bycatch, and compliance with more stringent regulations in hopes of contributing to stable supply of marine resources."


"There is an international competition over fishing grounds and natural resources among the US, China, and Taiwan, among others, in the Midwestern Pacific waters; we will attempt to overcome challenges as one of the members of the far seas purse seine fishing industry. To secure fishing grounds, we will seek support on a governmental level," he said.


Following Mr. Fukui, Kazuo Shima, Chairman of the Japan Far Seas Purse Seine Fishing Association, Takashi Sotoyama, a Tokyo Office representative of the Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishery Business Division of the Japan Finance Corporation, and Toshihiko Misawa, President of Miho Zosen shared their congratulatory speeches. After the kagami-biraki ceremony, Chuo-Gyorui President Hiroyasu Ito proposed a toast.


The original article was published on October 6, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.


September Tsukiji Market Stats: Average Unit Price Goes Down 7.9%

October 5, 2009

Transaction amounts of seven wholesalers in Tsukiji Market added up to 46,818 tons, a 2.7 percent contraction. The average unit price considerably plunged, ending at \700/kg, down 7.9 percentage points. A total transaction amount of the seven companies resulted in a 10.5 percent decline to \32.7 billion.

Daito-Gyorui Indicates Amount Increase by 6.2%

Only Daito Gyorui indicated a 6.2 percent increase in transaction amounts; everyone else suffered declines all across the board. Chuo-Gyorui, Daito-Gyorui, and Tohto Suisan all suffered a 10 percent fall in unit prices. In terms of transaction value, a two-digit tumble was experienced by Chuo-Gyorui, Tohto Suisan, and Tsukiji Uoichiba.


Results of other markets other than Tsukiji Market are as follows (amounts/unit price/value; numbers shown in parentheses indicate decrease or increase year to year):


[Adachi] 2,415t («2.8%); \675 («4.2%); \1.63B («0.9%)
[Ota] 1,215t («28.2%); \801 («1.6%); \973M («29.4%)
[Chiba] 2,068t (1.7%); \695 («6.4%); \1.437B («4.8%)
[Funabashi] 2,138t («4.7%); \639 («4.8%); \1.366B («9.2%)
[Kashiwa-Uoichiba] 2,054t («0.3%); \750 («4.7%); \1.541B («5.0%)


Tsukiji Market Transaction Amounts by Company for September '09


Company

Amount

Unit Price

Value

Chuo-Gyorui

8,853

791

7,003

(«0.196)

(«14.3%)

(«14.4%)

Daito-Gyorui

11,168

678

7,574

(6.2%)

(«9.8%)

(«4.2%)

Tohto Suisan

7,705

797

6,141

(«5.5%)

(«9.7%)

(«14.7%)

Tsukiji Uoichiba

7,633

686

5,238

(«7.6%)

(«4.0%)

(«11.3%)

Daiichi Suisan

4,247

739

3,138

(«5.8%)

(«3.4%)

(«9.0%)

Chiyoda Suisan

6,629

473

3,137

(«8.4%)

(0.1%)

(«8.3%)

Sogo Shokuhin

584

930

543

(«3.1%)

(2.2%)

(«0.9%)

Total

46,818

700

32.774

(«2.7%)

(«7.9%)

(«10.5%)


The original article was published on October 15, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.


Japan Far Seas Purse Seine Fishing Association Chairman Shima Celebrates Completion of Dainana Wakabamaru

October 2, 2009

Kazuo Shima, Chairman of the Japan Far Seas Purse Seine Fishing Association shared a congratulatory comment regarding the Dainana Wakabamaru of the Kyokuyo Group and Kyokuyo Suisan. The ship will be completed on October 4. Mr. Shima said, "I would like to offer my heartiest congratulations on the completion of the ship. It is the second large trial ship out of three that the far seas purse seine industry was longing for; after some twists and turns, the ship has finally reached its completion. I would like to express my deepest respect to not only the Kyokuyo Group and Kyokuyo Suisan, but also those who have been involved in the construction After the Dainana Wakabamaru's tryout operation, with its results in hand; I covet the systemization of large overseas purse seiners."

Bright Hope for Future of Far Seas Purse Seine Industry

Chairman Shima continued: "The Midwestern Pacific, where our far seas purse seiners operate, is an international fishing ground for over 200 bonito/tuna purse seiners from all over the world. The Convention on the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean, which took effect in 2004, declared that Total Allowable Effort would be curtailed to a 1999 level. However, there was an exceptional clause stating that "it is not allowed to interfer with surrounding island naitons' will"; taking advanrgae of the clause, other nations displayed unruly behavior, increasing the number of ships."


"In contrast, under the government oversight, our Japan's far seas purse seine fishing has earnestly maintained a 35-ship system, working harmoniously with other fisheires; as a result, we have kept an annual catch of 200,000 tons. However, in terms of internatonal competitiveness, we have been far behind other countries. This stemmed from the fact that other nations without regulations freely increased their ship sizes. They keep building vessls with a cargo capacity of 1,200 to 2,000 tons one after another, as opposed to an average capacity of 850 tons in Japan."


"An average age of our overseas purse seiners is 16 to 17 years old. A majority of ships are facing a replacement period. In the middle of the ever-changing fishing envrionment, as ship owners make new investment with the future in 10 or 20 years in mind, ships that are competitive enough to go head to head with other nations' must be constructed."


"It is such a novel move that the Fisheries Agency issued three trial construction permits, including the Dainana Wakabamaru; and it gives us a brigh hope for the future of the far seas purse seine fishing industry."


The original article was published on October 2, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.


August Surimi Imports Indicate 5,400 tons of Alaska Pollack

October 2, 2009

Based on trade statistics of the Ministry of Finance, pollack surimi from the US for the month of August amounted to 5,386 tons, a decrease of 28 percentage points. Its unit price shrank 46 percent to \255 per kg. Import amounts of golden threadfin bream surimi came to 3,148 tons, up eight percent. Its unit price shot down 52 percent.


The original article was published on October 2, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.


Kyokuyo President Fukui Talks About Construction of Overseas Purse Seiner

October 1, 2009

Kyokuyo president Kiyokazu Fukui spoke about the construction of the Dainana Wakabamaru at an interview. The President said, "We decided to build the Dainana Wakabamaru, because we came to a conclusion that we needed to continue strengthening our core operation of bonito-tuna fisheries. We will maintain a four-ship system of overseas purse seining; and when there are more opportunities showing up in our way, we will attempt to enhance overseas purse seining facilities."

Maintaining Four-Ship System of Overseas Purse Seining; Re-strengthening When There is Chance

Mr. Fukui talked about the Dainana Wakabamaru: "One of the reasons for the enlargement of a ship is by enlarging a ship size, a loading capacity increases from 800 tons to 1,200 tons, leading to operation efficiency improvement. A ship doesn't have to travel to and from fishing grounds in Japan frequently any longer, resulting in reductions in necessary fuel amounts. Another aim is to prove the higher profit efficiency level of a larger ship, compared to a conventional overseas purse seiner"


"As a matter of course, steady supply of harvested bonito becomes possible. Furthermore, it is another important point to make that a larger size ship is capable of the gentle treatment of natural resources by avoiding bycatch of small fish by using a large wall net."


"What we also want to prove is loading a helicopter makes it possible to locate schools of fish, as regulations on fishing boat operations are increasingly getting more stringent, such as a ban on drifting FAD operations."

New Ship's Capability to Respond with Energy Efficiency, Catch Increases, and Tougher Regulations

In terms of the new ship's business advantages, President Fukui said, "\2.3 billion was invested in the new ship. We gave it a go with the purpose of proving our will to continue the business operation as well as boosting the motivations of crewmembers and employees. "


"As for energy efficiency enhancement, in spite of its larger size, we installed the same engine size and horsepower as a conventional ship. The new ship, compared with a traditional model, is longer and slimmer; for that reason, there is less water pressure, ending in the same fuel consumption."


"Moreover, the number of trips made between Japan and fishing grounds for a year will be reduced; as a result, fuel costs will come down. In addition, we don't need to be concerned about the safety of an aged ship and its growing maintenance fees."


"Regarding balance of payments, the number of voyage will reduce by 1.5 times every year; traveling with 1,200 tons of cargo six times a year means 7,200 tons. Contrasted with 6,000 tons a year by a conventional model ship, there will be an increase of 1,200 tons."

Expansion of Bonito-Tuna Business Operation

The President spoke of the future business of bonito-tuna fisheries: "Our company has four different business segments: Marine Products Purchasing, Processed Food, Bonito-Tuna, and Logistics. Two years ago, we separated bonito-tuna business from the segment of Marine Products Purchasing; and we are considering expanding the bonito-tuna operation further more from now on. We began bluefin tuna aquaculture in Kochi Prefecture and now the large overseas purse seiner has been completed. Access to natural resources is indispensable; therefore, we will expand tuna aquaculture in the future and when we are allowed to have some more opportunities, we are willing to take on the further enhancement of facilities of overseas purse seiners."


The original article was published on October 1, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

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