An increasing number of wealthy buyers in Asia have shown an interest in nishikigoi, pushing up the market for the luxury ornamental fish.
In October last year, a Chinese collector made a successful bid of ¥203m (£1.4m) in a nishikigoi auction in Hiroshima Prefecture, reports The Japan Times.
While the deal was an extreme case, it is not rare these days for champion nishikigoi in competitive shows to be purchased by rich foreign buyers for tens of millions of yen, industry sources say.
Japan’s nishikigoi exports more than tripled to ¥4.3bn in 2018 from 15 years before. Demand for nishikigoi is now surging in Asia, including in China, Hong Kong and Thailand, on top of existing demand in the United States and Europe.