Kenyan fisherfolk at the Coast are set to benefit from the Go Blue programme which is implemented through the Italian Agency for Development Corporation (AICs).
The four-year (2021-2024) programme is financed by the European Union (EU) and implemented in conjunction with the government of Kenya and Jumuia za Kaunti za Pwani (JKP).
The Go Blue programme aims to foster the Blue Economy, through coastal development.
Aics is responsible for the realization of the Go Blue component of the Blue Economy. It targets to accelerate economic growth and strengthen the Blue Economy value chains.
Speaking to KNA in her office in Hola after a meeting with AICs team, County Executive Committee (CECM) Member for Land and Agriculture, Mwanajuma Hiribae, said AICs had conducted a scoping mission in Tana River and they will work with Kipini Beach Management Unit (BMU).
AICs will support and bring together fisheries stakeholders through capacity development, provision of specialized equipment and construction of improved fishing infrastructure.
”We have agreed with AICs to purchase ICT equipment, modern fishing gears. Five boats will be purchased through a revolving fund, the aim is to ensure our fisherfolk have enough boats to improve their productivity,’’ said Mwanajuma.
She added that fisherfolk will also be trained in modern ways of fishing. AICs work with nine BMUs in Kwale, Mombasa, Lamu, Taita-Taveta, Kwale and Tana River counties.
Paolo Damato Programme Officer for the Italian Agency said the project is funded by the EU and can be explained as the economic development of the coastal area, through spatial planning, environment conservation and maritime security.
“The idea is to find a way to bring prosperity through boosting entrepreneurship around the fisherfolk’’, added the Program Officer.
Through the Programme the Italian Agency will introduce an innovative labelling scheme, to certify the quality of products and that the processes adhered to defined standards for marketability.
JKP in partnership with international fisheries experts, Kenyan and international institutions, researchers and academics from the Technical University of Mombasa, will develop a Master Plan. The Plan will guide the sustainable growth and performance of the fishery sector in Coastal Kenya.
By Sadik Hassan