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Tecnologico del Mar visits aquaculture projects

The Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Hon Bernard Esau with the Ambassador of Spain, Her Excellency Mrs Carmen Diez (middle right), and the two representatives of the Spanish centre for marine technology, Mrs. Paloma Rueda and Mrs. Mercedes Martínez.

A delegation of the Spanish foundation, Centro Tecnológico del Mar (CETMAR), led by its Director, Mrs Paloma Rueda and the person responsible for International Cooperation, Mrs. Mercedes Martínez visited Namibia last week to assess progress at the two aquaculture projects supported by the Spanish Cooperation.

The delegation also met the Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Hon Bernard Esau. The visit to Namibia was for the specific purpose to evaluate the results of a number of initiatives to support local aquaculture.
Through the Spanish Cooperation agency, the Spanish government has been involved for some time in supporting the development of aquaculture centres in Kavango East and in the Omusati region.
Under the aquaculture support programme, Spanish Cooperation has provided specialised training for fish farmers and ministr officials at the Kamutchongo Inland Fisheries Institute on the Okavango River, just upstream of the Mahango section of the Babwatwa National Park. The scientific partner in this project is the University of Namibia.
In the Omusati region, technical assistance is provided to improve the efficiency and output of the fish feed plant at Onavivi.
Support is also provided to the National Marine Information and Research Centre (NATMIRC) in terms of updating of scientific information of fishing resources. Mrs. Rueda expressed her satisfaction for the fruitful collaboration between CETMAR and the fisheries ministry and offered to continue with this cooperation.
The Spanish delegation used the opportunity to visit the recently inaugurated inland aquaculture centre in Katima Mulilo.
This centre, which was financed by the Spanish Cooperation and implemented by CETMAR and the fisheries ministry, is a facility where fingerlings of bream (tilapia) and barbel (catfish) are bred and supplied to small-scale fish farmers. This breeding station can produce 1.5 million fingerlings in one season.
In Swakopmund, the Spaniards held a meeting with NATMIRC, an institution with which they have been collaborating since 2003 in terms of maintaining and updating the scientific information on marine fishing resources.

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