The Australian government has promised to help the nation’s seafood exporters with freight charter flights to major markets including China, according to producer Ocean Grown Abalone Ltd.

The government is likely to make an announcement on Wednesday, said Brad Adams, CEO of the Western Australia-based company. That could help support the seafood business, which has been affected by widespread cancellations of commercial flights that usually carry the products.

Brad Adams, CEO of the Western Australia-based company
Brad Adams, CEO of Ocean Grown Abalone Ltd.

“We’ve been lobbying hard, with a bunch of other seafood producers, to have some dedicated freight out of Australia for Australian seafood produce and I believe there is a resolution coming tomorrow,” Adams said by phone on Tuesday.

The support comes as demand for Australian seafood in China and some other key Asian markets has started to recover as restaurants reopen after months of shutdowns. The drop in demand from China as well as the flight disruptions had pummeled global producers, causing U.S. lobster prices to fall to the lowest in at least four years and prompting New Zealand to release catches back into the wild.

“In the last couple of weeks there’s been increasing orders for rock lobster and abalone in China but we now have significant freight and logistics issues,” said Julian Harrington, chief executive of the Tasmanian Seafood Industry Council.

Harrington said he has been working with state and federal governments on a support package for exporters and was “hopeful” of an announcement of support within days.