Cameroon Promotes Fish-Farming Entrepreneurship
I’m sure by now you’ve heard that agriculture could be the key to Africa’s path out of poverty and a means through which it could feed its citizens (a population that’s expected to double by 2050), provide ongoing employment for its booming young population and generate a currency for trade with other countries. So, it’s therefore no surprise that Cameroon is promoting aquaculture entrepreneurship (a fancy name for fish-farming) through its Aquaculture Entrepreneurship Promotion Project (PPEA); a project which will help to establish over 300 small enterprises in the fish-farming sector.
Cameroon and the United Nations International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) signed an agreement to finance the project and this project is expected to cost $3.3 million, $1 million of which will be funded by IFAD while the balance will be provided by the Cameroonian government. The project is expected to generate 1,500 jobs with 30% of these new enterprises being managed by women and 50% by young people.
Fish demand in Camerooon is estimated at 400,000 tonnes/year and currently, production does not meet domestic demand due to the lack of qualified fishers and fishing equipment. Therefore, the country resorts to imports to meet the shortfall by importing roughly 200,000 tonnes of fish products per year for national consumption. So of course, fish farming is crucial because it reduces the level of foreign exchange spent on imports (funds that could potentially be reinvested in the economy), it improves livelihoods and reduces poverty, it stimulates the economy and most importantly, provides incomes for urban & rural populations.
The fish-farming project is a small step in Cameroon’s implementation of its larger Sustainable Aquaculture Development Plan; a vision in which it promotes profitable fish-farming businesses that create jobs in several regions of the country. So if this project is to be sustainable, education is, of course, important. Therefore, the project will provide fishers with access to training and advisory support services while helping to foster partnerships among those in the fish-farming sector – every step along the fish-farming value chain.
Thumbs up to Cameroon ehn?!