CAMEROON – The Republic of Cameroon and the United Nations International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) have signed an agreement to finance the Aquaculture Entrepreneurship Promotion Project (PPEA) that will help to establish over 300 small enterprises in the fish farming sector.
The new project is expected to create 1,500 new jobs, with thirty per cent of these enterprises being managed by women and 50 per cent by young people.
The total cost of the new project is US$3.3 million. The funding includes a $1 million IFAD grant as well as a $2.3 million contribution from the government.
The agreement was signed in Rome by Taiga, Minister of Livestock, Fisheries and Animal Industries of the Republic of Cameroon, and by Périn Saint Ange, Associate Vice President of IFAD in charge of Progammes Management Department.
Cameroon imports more than 200,000 tonnes of fish products per year for national consumption due to inadequate local production due to lack of fishing equipment and qualified fishers.
The country’s domestic fish demand is estimated at 400,000 tonnes.
“Aquaculture can help to increase the incomes of rural populations, improve their livelihood and reduce poverty in rural areas,” said Bernard Mwinyel Hien, IFAD Representative and Country Programme Manager for Cameroon.
“One of the innovations in this new project is that it applies a business incubator approach that nurtures entrepreneurialism and supports the development of new enterprises.”
PPEA will pilot, at a small scale, the implementation of the Sustainable Aquaculture Development Plan for Cameroon.
It aims to promote profitable aquaculture enterprises that create jobs in the South, Littoral and Centre regions of the country.
The project will help to develop partnerships among those involved in the fish farming sector, including the private sector which plays a role in the production, processing and marketing of fish.
Implemented by the Ministry of Livestock, Fisheries and Animal Industries, the project will also help fishers access adequate training and advisory support services.