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Fisheries play a very important role in food security in the Kingdom of Thailand as a food and income supplier and in the Thai economy as a provider of valuable export products. The average per capita consumption of fish in Thailand during the period 2000 to 2003 was 30.85 kg/year (Table 1). This is significantly higher than the world average of 16.3 kg/year (Table 1) and reflects the importance of fish in food security, as well as the general preference for fish as a source of protein in Thailand.

Table 1 Fish and seafood consumption per capita per year (kilogram)1







Thailand 30.6 31.3 30.9 30.6
East & Southeast Asia 25.3 26.7 26.3 26.0
World 16.2 16.5 16.3 16.1

Fisheries are also important in the local and national economies and in the country's international trade and the development of fisheries in Thailand has been heavily influenced by the global market. This is reflected in the rapid development of trawl fisheries in the 1970s, targeting shrimp for export and also in the relatively fast development of purse seine fisheries in the early 1980s, targeting pelagic species. As a result, during the period 2001 to 2003, Thailand was the second largest global exporter of fishery commodities.

There are two main fisheries sectors in Thailand, namely the capture fishery sector and the fish culture sector. For capture fisheries, the fishing gears employed both in marine and inland fisheries are many and varied, with the type of gear employed largely determined by the size of the fisheries being exploited, i.e. small-scale fisheries (SSF) and large-scale (commercial) fisheries (LSF). This report presents a detailed picture of the current status of SSF and LSF production of Thailand, as well as of participation in the country's marine and inland capture fisheries.

1 FAO, FAOStat Data _ Food Supply (3 March 2006 [cited 29 May 2006]); available from:

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