Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Sherry Ayittey. (Photo: ISSF)
Govt. appeals private sector to boost aquaculture
Tuesday, November 15, 2016, 02:20 (GMT + 9)
The Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Sherry Ayittey, has requested the private sector participation in developing aquaculture, after highlighting the viability of the business venture.
Speaking at the 32nd National Farmers’ Day celebrations at Kintampo, the minister appealed private sector actors to support the development of aquaculture along its value chain, especially in the areas of financing and technical assistance.
In addition, the official stressed the fact that the Ministry has created an enabling environment for the private sector to leverage on to help boost aquaculture in the country, GhanaWeb reported.
The Minister cited the 5-year Ghana National Aquaculture Development Plan (GNADP), aimed at enhancing and improving the sector as one key avenue, viable for private sector participation.
With the USD 85 million plan, the government intends to increase aquaculture production from 27,250 metric tonnes in 2013 to 100,000 metric tonnes in 2018 and is also expected to create an estimated 220,000 jobs across the value chain in aquaculture development.
In this regard, Minister Ayittey pointed out that non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and community based-organizations (CBOs) should take a look at the Plan and identify the areas that they can offer financial and technical assistance to aid the Ministry implement it successfully.
The official explained that the Ministry has adopted and implementing policies, programmes and strategies that will channel investment, including private sector investment to the fisheries and aquaculture industry to be one of the leading sectors, contributing significantly to GDP, job creation and foreign exchange earnings.
As part of the strategy, the minister informed that the Ministry of Fisheries has signed a partnership agreement with a Brazilian Company to implement a "flagship shrimp farming project" under the auspices of a private, public partnership arrangement.
"Out-grower scheme will be implemented under the arrangement involving one nucleus fish farmer with 250 out-growers for the first phase. The scheme is expected to produce 30,000 metric tonnes of high valued shrimps annually for export and create 75,000 jobs," she explained.
The minister recognised that fish feed remains the major constraint impeding aquaculture development but she indicated that the government has contributed to the construction of a 40,000 metric ton feed mill at Akuse.
Furthermore, the fish Processing factory at Elimina will produce 10,000 metric ton fish feed and this will further assist farmers with requisite skills and standards for export.