Lack of funds hampering implementation of small scale fisheries plan of action

Namibia’s National Plan of Action for Small Scale Fisheries (NPOA-SSF), launched in June 2022 to boost socio-economic growth, faces hurdles due to insufficient funding.

This is according to Johannes Hamukwaya, Deputy Director of Aquaculture and Inland Fisheries at the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources, who was speaking to the media at Swakopmund on Tuesday on the side-lines of a workshop on developing a resource mobilisation strategy for the NOPA-SSF for 2022 to 2026.

The plan of action recognises the important role the small scale fisheries sector plays in socio-economic growth and economic transformation.

Hamukwaya said there is a need for the ministry to mobilise resources in order to implement the plan.

“We do not want to have a plan that cannot be implemented due to a lack of resources. However, we do know that there are many development partners, especially within the natural resources department, involved in conservation and the use of natural resources as well as climate change and resilience activities, under which small scale fisheries falls,” he said.

Hamukwaya stressed that the funding needed is not for small activities, as the ministry has already worked at the sectorial level. These funds are necessary to scale up projects, such as improving fish preservation, benefiting communities.

“Fish is a perishable commodity, and it only lasts for a very short period of time. If not preserved correctly, it could spoil quickly and become inedible. So, we are exploring ways to assist these small-scale fishers in this regard, such as providing cold storage facilities, among others, so that they can still sell their fish in good condition.”

The objectives of the workshop are for the ministry, partners, and stakeholders to strategise and identify potential development partners who can contribute funding towards the implementation of the National Plan of Action.

The workshop, attended by representatives of the Ministry of Fisheries, the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, and small-scale fisheries, will end on Friday.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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