• Taiz

  • Wednesday, January 3, 2024 at 4:09 AM
    Last Update : Monday, January 15, 2024 at 4:54 AM

Fish Prices Soar in Yemen’s Taiz Due to Red Sea Tensions

(AWP) - Ongoing tensions in the Red Sea due to the Houthi attacks on foreign ships are taking their toll on fishing in Yemen, as many fishermen have had to either stop working or sail further distances into the sea. This has led to a massive hike in fish prices due to the limited quantities supplied to the markets.

In the fish market of the city of Taiz, traders complain about the rocketing fish prices.

Nabil Hamoud, a fish trader, says, "We used to go to al-Khawkhah and al-Mokha to buy cheap fish. Now, after the attacks by Houthi rebels, fishermen have been banned from entering."

Hammoud emphasises the impact on all the groups that have been affected by the halt in fishing activities.

He asked, "Who is affected? Those affected are the fishermen, the traders, and the citizens. Those are the three affected segments. Fish is expensive. How do we sell it when we cannot buy it?"

His comments were echoed by Ali Abdou, another Yemeni fish trader who affirms that the increase in wholesale prices is causing great losses for traders.

Abdou said, "We go to al-Mokha and find that the fish is expensive. We go to al-Khawkhah and find the same situation. The price of a kilogram of any type of fish has increased. What we used to get for 50,000 [Yemeni riyals] has doubled to 100,000 riyals. I mean, the basket that you used to get for 50,000 has reached 100,000 riyals. A kilogram that costs 6000 riyals is 8000 by the time it reaches here, and when you sell it, you lose money; it is all a loss."

Yemenis at the fish market have been similarly overwhelmed by the price increases in the city where fish is a staple part of their diet.

Abdulsamad Saif, a Taiz resident, said, "I walk around the fish market and the price [per kilogram] before the events was 7000 or 6500 riyals, but after the events that happened at sea, it reached 12,500 riyals. [Fish] is basic sustenance for people, and with the conditions and the bombing of ships by the Houthis, the situation has become difficult."

Abdulkarim al-Shumeiri, another Taiz resident, says that he "used to buy fish for 5000 [Yemeni] riyals per kilogram before the [Houthi attacks] but now we buy it for 13,000 – that’s if we find it. Fish is our staple food."

Several foreign ships were attacked by the Yemeni Houthi militant group – attacks which they claim are in response to Israel’s ongoing war in the Gaza Strip since October 7.