AfricaPress-Tanzania: ZANZIBAR government has developed a strategic plan to integrate the small-scale fishermen into the blue economy including their deep sea fishing.

Under the initiative, the government has started uniting the small scale fishermen into groups and linking them with financial institutions, which have also agreed to provide them with loans, the House of Representatives was told here on Wednesday.

Blue Economy and Fisheries Minister Abdallah Hussein Kombo said the ministry has already talked with Equity Bank and NMB bank over the credit facilities provision to fishermen.

“We have already submitted 112 fishing groups as 59 in Pemba and 53 groups in Unguja to the banks for initial training,” the minister said, while responding to a question by Kojani Representative Hassan Hamad Omar who sought to know the government’s plans to integrate Kojani-based fishermen into the blue economy.

Minister Kombo said the government is determined to equipping all traditional fishermen with the necessary skills so that they fully participate in the envisaged blue economy.

He said completion of Pemba’s Mtambwe and Unguja’s Makunduchi Vocational Training Centres will help in training many fishermen. Besides other vocational skills, the centres will have a special curriculum to develop fishing activities in the economy.

In his question, the legislator accused the government of ignoring ordinary fishermen in the country, saying: “It’s unfortunate the government has environmental conservation programmes, but it has none to develop small scale fishermen.”


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