THE fishing industry in Parit Jawa, Muar, is at a standstill following the return of foreign workers to their homes in Indonesia to celebrate Hari Raya.
Muar-Batu Pahat Fishermen’s Association president Ser Boon Huat said consumers have to brace themselves for a fish shortage and a hike in prices.
A check on Aug 26 at Parit Jawa fishing village, one of the largest in Johor, revealed that about 23 per cent of foreign workers, mostly Indonesians, had returned home to celebrate Hari Raya. They are expected to return next month.
Parit Jawa fish auctioneer Lim Ah Hong, 48, said imported fish from Sumatra, Indonesia, had also stopped due to poor catch, escalating operating costs and the festive season.
Ser said this had paralysed the industry, forcing about 300 boats in the Parit Jawa fishing village to remain on shore.
He said the industry faced a dire shortage of workers, adding that most of the local fishermen were above 60 years.