The offshore waters of Panama abound in fish and seafood, and fisheries are a significant sector of the national economy. There is freshwater fishing in the Chiriquí River and deep-sea fishing along the Pacific and Caribbean coasts for amberjack, barracuda, bonito, corbina, dolphinfish, mackerel, pompano, red snapper, sailfish, sea bass, and tuna.
In 2000, the fish catch totaled 223,502 tons, as compared with 131,514 tons in 1986. The main commercial species caught that year were Pacific anchoveta (86,681 tons), Pacific thread herring (63,532 tons), skipjack tuna (15,796 tons), and yellowfin tuna (7,994 tons). Exports of fish products were valued at nearly $256.5 million in 2000.