Spaniards assess fisheries projects

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WINDHOEK – Members of the Spanish foundation, Centro Tecnologico del Mar (CETMAR), led by its Director, Paloma Rueda, as well as the official responsible for international co-operation, Mercedes Martínez, visited Namibia to follow-up on the projects the agency is implementing, specifically within the aquaculture sector.

The delegation met Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources (MFMR), Bernard Esau, and other officials within the ministry. During the meetings, the delegation evaluated the results of the different steps that have been undertaken in the framework of the project called Supporting Aquaculture in Namibia. These steps include specialised training for aquaculture at the Kamutchonga Inland Fisheries Institute near Divundu (in conjunction with UNAM), technical assistance to improve the Fish Feed Plant in Onavivi (Omusati Region) and support to the National Marine Information and Research Centre (NATMIRC) in terms of updating scientific information of fisheries resources.

Rueda expressed satisfaction with the collaboration between CETMAR and MFMR and promised to continue this co-operation.

The Spanish delegation visited the recently inaugurated inland aquaculture centre in Katima Mulilo, which was financed by Spanish Cooperation (AECID) and implemented by CETMAR and MFMR. The facility can produce tilapia and catfish fingerlings. It also aims at providing technical support and training to the local aquaculture farmers.

The facility is located near the Zambezi River and has a production capacity of 1.5 million fingerlings per season. The project is expected to improve food security by enhancing fish production.
The delegation also travelled to Swakopmund for a meeting with NATMIRC, with whom they have been collaborating since 2003 in terms of updating the scientific information of fishing resources off the Namibian coast as well as providing training.

CETMAR is a Spanish foundation created in 2001 with the aim of promoting co-operation among institutions, research centres and maritime and fishery sectors.