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Horse mackerel swims North

Excited about enhanced fish distribution. From the left are Henry Line, a Spoto Fishing director; Ripanda Meroro, Spoto Fishing’s chairman; Garden Hengua, Namsov Marketing Manager; Tuna Willem, Namsov,s Chief Sustainability Officer and the administrator of the Namsov Community Trust; Katrina Shimbulu, Spoto Fishing’s vice chairperson and Wilhelm Kafidi, also a Spoto Fishing director.(Photograph by Amerie Bennett).

The Namsov Community Trust and Spoto Fishing on Wednesday signed an agreement in which Namsov will avail N$3million in funding to Spoto Fishing to enable the fish distributor to expand its marketing of horse mackerel to local communities.

Spoto Fishing noted a growing demand for fish in the local market which is not adequately served. The Namsov Community Trust funding will be used by Spoto Fishing to establish the first phase of a fish distribution project in Eenhana in the Ohangwena region.
“The concept is the promotion of employment and at the same time making Namsov’s horse mackerel available to as many households in rural Namibia as possible,” said Namsov Marketing Manager Garden Hengua.
Spoto Fishing is a local fishing company comprising five right holder companies namely Starting Right, Pomavale, Oshongo, Touch Down and Omahundju.
“To this end, 400 freezers and 400 scales were acquired for selected vendors for the first phase of this initiative. An agreement was entered into with a selected distributor who identified vendors along routes in northern Namibia, operating out of Ongwediva, between Otavi, Grootfontein and Tsumeb, operating out of Tsumeb and in rural Windhoek. Four purpose-built vehicles were acquired for the distribution process at N$2 million and these have been taken over by the distributor” said Hengua.
He also said the funding agreement with Spoto Fishing is part of the Trust’s list of objectives which include assisting and promoting the well-being of underprivileged and disadvantaged people and communities throughout Namibia by offering and promoting opportunities for sound development.
Spoto Fishing Chairman, Ripanda Meroro said the fish shop will add value through employment creation in Eenhana and the availability of affordable healthy food and thereby support the Growth at Home Strategy.
Elaborating on their own fishing activities, Meroro said that Spoto Fishing has acquired a N$134 million vessel together with three other right holders to form a joint venture company called Carapu Fishing.
“Basically we put our little quotas together to have the necessary critical mass to operate the vessel for at least eight months. By doing so we have created 55 permanent jobs and 45 casual jobs for Namibians while only 39 are foreign crew”.
Namsov estimates that its long-standing support to fish distribution have created around 800 employment opportunities over the years. Hengua said “We have established fish distribution projects partnerships like Spoto, Ekwao, Oshivelo. [These project partners] are located in northern Namibia, in the north-central areas and in Windhoek and neighbouring area.
He added that Namsov is involved with the Namibia Fish Consumption Promotion Trust to help them in various ways to deliver on their mandate to promote fish distribution to and consumption in local communities.
This week’s agreement with Spoto Fishing has added another five permanent jobs and eight casual jobs.

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