Fisheries and Aquaculture: Outlook and Opportunities.

Belize offers an ideal marine environment that has bolstered continued growth and diversification in the fisheries and aquaculture industry. Belize’s unique geographical location and close proximity to major market destinations, offers a multitude of key advantages for investment. Being located only 2 hours away from the US and other key Central American and Caribbean markets has enabled the industry to supply fresh products on a weekly basis. This continues to provide many benefits to the industry’s continued development allowing Fisheries to rank 4th in income earnings contributing up to 3% to Belize’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2016.

The Fisheries and Aquaculture industry in Belize also benefits from ideal climatic conditions with mean monthly maxima air temperatures ranging from 33° C / 91° F in the summer to 28° C / 82° F in the winter, and mean monthly minima temperatures ranging from 16° C / 61° F in the winter to 24° C / 75° F in the summer. Warm sea water temperatures off the coast also open the doors for many investment opportunities in the industry with Belize being sub-divided into two (2) climatic systems with sub-tropical conditions in the northern lowlands and central inland areas, and tropical conditions in the southern and coastal areas. This increases the prospect for product diversification.

Currently, the Fisheries and Aquaculture industry employs 1.7% of the labour force in Belize, totalling approximately 2,538 individuals with a multitude of indirect employment opportunities (2016). Presently, capture fisheries species include Spiny Lobster, Queen Conch, Sea Cucumber and Finfish; while culture species include Pacific White Shrimp, Nile Tilapia, Cobia (mariculture) and emerging opportunities in seaweed farming. Belize’s main export markets for Fisheries products include the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Guatemala, CARICOM as well as markets in Asia and Europe.

Although the industry has experienced fluctuations in the Shrimp Industry recently, the Statistical Institute of Belize’s (SIB) report for shrimp exports for January and February 2017 has seen an estimated BZD $2 million dollar increase in exports over 2016. The increase in exports mirrors the rebounding and growth of the shrimp industry which directly employs over 1,400 Belizeans – mostly including women in rural areas who collectively earn approximately BZD $7 million dollars in income. Apart from shrimp farming, Belize has also grown in tilapia and seaweed farming with opportunities that exist to produce and export snapper, grouper, red drum, octopus and sea cucumber among other Fisheries commodities.

Investment Opportunities:

The Fisheries and Aquaculture industry in Belize holds several opportunities for investment including but not limited to the following:

  1. Marine Cage Farming Systems – which are systems within the inner Barrier Reef Lagoon that benefits from major protection from hurricanes due to the various cayes and reef formations in the surrounding areas.
  2. Earthen Embankment Ponds – used to accommodate aquaculture ventures along the coastal plain as well as inland.
  3. Freshwater Cage Farming – used for inland aquaculture developments
  4. Raft Culture / Rope Culture – for oyster and seaweed farming
  5. Seaweed Farming – a valuable commodity towards fisheries diversification, fetching a premium price per pound of dried seaweed both in the local and export markets.
  6. Sea Cucumber Farming – a product in high demand with popularity in Asia stemming from the dried product’s unique components that serve different applications in food and medicine.
  7. Value Addition for Fisheries Commodities – these include value added fisheries products such as “ready to cook,” development of fish feed, or applications in cosmetics through bio prospecting.

For more details on investment opportunities in Belize’s Fisheries and Aquaculture industry, please feel free to contact our team at BelizeINVEST, a unit of BELTRAIDE!


14 Orchid Garden St.

City of Belmopan

Phone: +501-822-3737/0175




BELTRAIDE’s National Competitiveness Month – May 2018

Competitiveness is considered as a key criterion for assessing companies, industries and even a country’s long-term success. A competitive mind-set is one that actively seeks opportunities for growth and aggressively identifies strategies that contributes to a business sustainability. To be competitive, also, means maintaining a keen sense of inclusiveness and awareness of the business landscape, with an over-all goal of creating positive economic impact for both the individuals and the firms. That is why it is imperative to the success of our country, in promoting and enabling competitiveness among companies and industries, both in the domestic and international markets.

BELTRAIDE, with several of its key public and private sector partners, will be celebrating National Competitiveness Month in May. The month with showcase how competitiveness is being strengthening in three key areas: in firms, in labour, and in government. As a result, there will be a series of export development discussions and workshops, importance of intellectual property rights to competitiveness, career fairs and job preparedness trainings, as well as the launch of BELTRAIDE’s very own client assistance mobile app,

BELTRAIDE will also present for the first time our National Female Business Ambassador, thereby encouraging more women into high-growth exporting business areas.

We continue to work in partnership with our stakeholders to ensure that we are improving, strengthening, and investing in our greatest asset- the Belizean economy, by extension our firms and workforce. Belize needs to improve its competitiveness, in order to stabilize, grow and diversify our national economy.


BelizeINVEST, BELTRAIDE facilitates presentation on Business Opportunities in Belize at the Belize Taiwan Chamber of Commerce Business Forum

BelizeINVEST, BELTRAIDE facilitated a presentation on Business Opportunities in Belize to over 50 private sector stakeholders at the Belize Taiwan Chamber of Commerce Business Forum held at the Coastal Zone Management Authority and Institute (CZMAI) Training Room in Belize City on April 21, 2018 with the Keynote Address delivered by Hon. Tracy Taegar Panton, Minister of State, Ministry of Economic Development, Petroleum, Investment, Trade and Commerce. Minister Panton highlighted some of the key milestones accomplished over the past three years by the Ministry, along with BELTRAIDE in the different priority sectors through the implementation of a strategic Investment Model which encompasses 5 key factors:

  1. Job creation
  2. Improved Investment Facilitation and general Service Quality for greater transparency, accountability, predictability and effectiveness.
  3. Improved Market Access for the exportation of local goods and services;
  4. Capacity building for Industry Growth, Entrepreneurship and Innovation;
  5. Return on Investments

Mr. Hero Balani, Manager, Investment Generation, BelizeINVEST was present at the event in delivering the primary presentation highlighting  the numerous investment opportunities that exist in Belize’s emerging industries in sectors as Agriculture & Agribusiness, Offshore Outsourcing Services and Tourism amongst others.

For further details on the event or on opportunities in Belize’s emerging industries, please contact BelizeINVEST,  BELTRAIDE at or call +501 822-3737.

JOINT PRESS RELEASE – Phasing out of single-use plastic bags and Styrofoam and plastic food utensils

Belmopan. March 20, 2018. The Ministry of Fisheries, Forestry, the Environment and Sustainable Development, the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Commerce, and the Ministry of Tourism led a collaborative taskforce comprising the Department of the Environment, Customs Department, Beltraide, Directorate General of Foreign Trade, and Solid Waste Management Authority to advance a proposal to Cabinet to reduce plastic and Styrofoam pollution through the phasing out of single-use plastic shopping bags and Styrofoam and plastic food utensils by April 22, 2019. The proposal was approved by Cabinet at its sitting today, 20th March 2018.

The phasing out of plastic shopping bags and Styrofoam and plastic food utensils, such as clamshells, flat plates and cups, is a necessary pollution control measure to protect the terrestrial and marine environment from harmful plastic contamination. Biodegradable alternatives to the plastic and Styrofoam products already exist on the Belizean market in the form of shopping bags, clamshells, coffee cups and plates manufactured from plant-based materials.

Plastic shopping bags and Styrofoam clamshells are used by the average person for only a few minutes before they are thrown away where they can last for decades in the landfill or as litter on the side of highways, in rivers, along coastlines and in the sea, causing harm to wildlife and fishes vulnerable to choking on plastic pieces. The annual clean-up cost of this pollution is considerable and is borne by volunteers, government and civil society groups. In the municipal waste stream, plastic and Styrofoam comprise about 19% of the volume, and therefore 19% of the cost of national solid waste management.

Globally, plastic and Styrofoam pollution is a major concern. Large floating debris piles have formed in the Caribbean Sea and other major water bodies. These international waste debris are not only difficult to track, as they migrate with ocean currents, but they are prohibitively costly to clean up, some ending up on the Belize Barrier Reef. With the second largest barrier reef in the world, Belize is doing its part to reduce marine pollution and protect the natural environment that is the foundation of our vibrant tourism industry.


For more information contact:
Tel: +501-822-0160


Belize and the Caribbean Region Showcase Opportunities in Outsourcing Services at the 22nd Global Connection Forum in Mexico City

As consumer demands continue to evolve, companies strive to become competitive through innovation by enhancing their products and services. At the same time, the primary focus is also geared towards ensuring customer satisfaction, which is achieved not only through competitive prices, but also, through customer experience. This is attained through efficient and effective supply chains; hence, companies quickly seek to outsource part of their operations to specialized companies in nearshore destinations as Belize.

Amidst these global changes, the Mexican Institute for Teleservices is currently hosting the 22nd Global Connection Forum in Mexico City, as of March 12th – 14th, 2018, which seeks to serve as a platform for Offshore Outsourcing Services stakeholders to learn about the most recent and emerging global trends in the contact centre services sector. As part of its objectives to foster trade and investment in Belize’s Offshore Outsourcing Services Sector, the Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (BELTRAIDE) in partnership with the Caribbean Association for Investment Promotion Agencies (CAIPA), participated in the event to showcase Belize’s competitive advantages as an emerging nearshore destination inclusive of the Caribbean region as a competitive outsourcing region. These objectives will be achieved through networking, exhibition displays, and private roundtable discussions between targeted companies and participating Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) of the Caribbean to briefly speak on the value proposition for potential investments in this sector.

For further details on the event or on opportunities in Belize’s growing Offshore Outsourcing Services Sector, please contact BelizeINVEST,  BELTRAIDE at or call +501 822-3737.

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