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Support for small scale fishermen

MAPUTO, 22 Apr (AIM) – Mozambique is committed to the development of small
scale fishing and aquaculture because it considers this to be a strategic
vector for developing food security and contributing to improving the
balance of payments.

According to the Minister of Fisheries, Victor Borges, the fishing sector in
Mozambique plays a strategic role in food and nutritional security, raising
foreign exchange and generating jobs with an annual catch of 200,000 tonnes.

Speaking in Maputo on Monday during a regional meeting on the effects of
climate change and natural disasters on the fisheries sector, the Minister
pointed out that last year the country had to cope with a serious outbreak
of white spot disease that affected about 600 tonnes of production.

Borges stated that “about ninety per cent of the fisheries sector in
Mozambique is in the form of artisanal fisheries”.

According to Borges, fisheries lies in fifth place in Mozambique’s exports,
contributing two per cent to Gross National Product through exports worth 75
million dollars per year.

Mozambicans each consume on average ten kilogrammes of fish per year, which
represents about half of all animal protein consumed in the country.
However, Borges pointed out that this is still below the internationally
recommended level.

Currently the Mozambican government is encouraging private initiatives to
develop fish processing on land, especially with tuna fish.

The Minster added that the government is consolidating the national
inspection system for the control of quality in fish produce to protect the
consumer and export markets.

However, the Minster warned that natural disasters and climate change are
adding to recent problems of overfishing, pollution, coastal erosion and the
degradation of aquatic ecosystems.

The meeting is organised by the Ministry of Fisheries, the United Nations
Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and the New Partnership for Africa’s
Development (NEPAD).

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Mozambique News Agency

Tel +44 (0)7941 890630

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