Crabs, clams, oysters,
seaweeds, shrimps, lobsters, squids in many colors , shapes and
Tawau fish trade dependent on supply from
The survival of major fish processing plants in Tawau is dependent
on the volume and quality of raw materials from Indonesia.
On Indonesia’s status as an important fisheries trading partner for
Sabah, ranking only second to Peninsular Malaysia in terms of fish
imports during the 1991-1999 period, he said imports from there made
up 13-23 per cent (mean 16.4 per cent) of the annual fisheries
Except for 1998-1999, fish exports to Indonesia are negligible,
representing only 0.02-1.41 per cent (mean 0.29 per cent) of Sabah
Fisheries imports from Indonesia can be grouped into four main
3) spiny lobster and
4) miscellaneous dried products.
Frozen fish comprising high value species. These 6 species make up the bulk of the annual
4) spanish mackerel,
5) snappers and
1) shrimp (frozen or chilled),
2) spiny lobsters and
3) other miscellaneous products (dried or salted
The average fisheries import prices fluctuated
between RM3.46 and 7.69 per kg during the 1991-1999 period.
Statistics for the 1991-1997 period showed fisheries exports to
Indonesia amounted to 6,380 metric tonnes annually, which comprised
canned fisheries products and other processed fish products that had
been imported mainly from Peninsular Malaysia and Thailand.
Sabah imported a total of 9,432 metric tonnes of fish products worth
RM50.7 million from Indonesia during the 1991-1999 period. This
represents only 2.7 per cent by volume and 0.5 per cent by value of
the State fisheries imports.
Tawau is the main focal point of fisheries trade (barter) with
Kalimantan, Indonesia, the prices of fish products were negotiated
by fish traders on both sides of the border based on current supply
and demand or previous mutual agreement.
Prices are fixed in the more stable Malaysian ringgit with payments
made, either in Indonesian Rupiah or US dollars, according to the
current exchange rates.
Large portion of these raw materials imported from Indonesia
consisted mainly of high value species targeted for both the
domestic and international markets, including Japan, Hong Kong,
Singapore, Taiwan, China, USA and Europe.
To ensure regular supply of raw materials from Indonesia, a number
of the fish processing plants in Tawau have established sister
plants or trading houses with Indonesian partners in Eastern
Kalimantan. Raw materials are obtained from Kalimantan and Sulawesi.