20-06-2011 12:11 Seychelles
Seychelles firm keen on fishing joint venture with Tanzania
VICTORIA (SEYCHELLES)(NNN-DAILYNEWS) -- THE most prosperous fishing company in Seychelles, Oceana Fisheries, is keen to enter into joint ventures with Tanzanian fishermen in the quest to expand its fishing grounds.
The company has already inspected facilities offered by Zanzibar and Mwanza. Oceana Fisheries Manager Jean-Claude Hoareau said here on Saturday that if all goes well the company will take off with a sustainable venture with Zanzibar fishermen as negotiations continue for further extension to the Tanzania mainland.
The Zanzibar Minister for Livestock and Fisheries, Mr Said Ali Mbarouk, who is one of the members of President Jakaya Kikwete’s delegation here, said that a joint fishing venture with Oceana is welcome in Tanzania, especially in Zanzibar.
Mr Mbarouk said that Tanzania had a huge Indian Ocean territory, large lakes and numerous rivers but fishing was rather insignificant.
He said Tanzanians could learn from the activities of Oceana Fishing Company and Seychellois’ fishermen generally.
He said that the international fish market was huge and that Tanzanian fishermen could exploit the opportunity to make a more decent living.
In the Sychelles the fishing industry contributes 20 per cent of the national foreign exchange earnings.
In Tanzania, the minister said, the industry shunts in only six per cent of forex earnings. Oceana is the leading sea food processing company in Seychelles with over 15 years experience in handling, processing and marketing high quality fish and seafood.
The products are harvested from the clean, pristine and unpolluted waters of the Seychelles Economic Zone.
Oceana Company products include fresh fish, seafood, fish burgers, smoked fish, fish sausages and fish balls.
Most of the company's products are exported to the European Union (EU), especially the United Kingdom and Germany.
The EU, according to Manager Hoareau, has set high and strict quality standards that the Oceana production plant should respect.
The species of Indian Ocean fish processed by Oceana include tuna fish, sail fish, swordfish, shark, green job fish, prawns, squid, lobster, octopus, mussels, crabs and emperor red snappers. Oceana exports between ten and 15 tonnes of fish weekly.
The Honorary Consul for Seychelles in Tanzania, Ms Maryvonne Pool, said that plans to enable Oceana to fish in Zanzibar waters have reached advanced stage. She said she has already inspected the facilities offered by Zanzibar.
She added that a fishing venture between Oceana and local fishermen in Zanzibar or Tanzania mainland would help strengthen the existing cooperation between Seychelles and Tanzania. Most fishing is carried out at small-scale by ill-equipped locals in Tanzania.
President Kikwete arrived yesterday in Victoria, the capital of Seychelles, as guest of honour at this year's National Day which is a festive annual event that falls on June 18. In 1991 Seychelles re-introduced the multi-party system and a new Constitution.
Another member of the presidential delegation, retired Brigadier Hassan Ngwilizi, who is also the MP for Mlalo (CCM), said that Tanzania and Seychelles have a solid foundation for cooperation dating back to the early Sixties.
In the late 70s, Brig. Ngwilizi came to Seychelles as the head of Tanzanian troops and helped put down a looming military coup in the Seychelles.
The troops remained in the island nation for nearly ten years protecting the Seychellois and training their military.
Ngwilizi said that Tanzanians have a lot to learn from the success story of the Seychellois booming fishing industry and tourism.
He was particularly impressed by the economic gains acquired by Seychelles since the early Seventies.
Lieutenant General Abdulrahman Amiri Shimbo, who, like Brig. Ngwilizi, helped, fight and vanquish mutineers in Seychelles in the early Seventies, praised the people of Seychelles for their patriotism. He also praised them for their success in repelling Somali pirates.