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UN, FAO to partner Anambra on catfish value chain

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ALL is set for a multilateral collaboration between United Nations (UN) Food, Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and Anambra in the area of catfish production, processing and export.

  In this direction, a team from the two international agencies has arrived Anambra State for a five-day primary data gathering on activities and interactions with actors in catfish value chain in the state.

  The five-day interaction with the key actors in the catfish value chain is intended to help gather information and understand the strengths and weaknesses of the Industry in the State to inform the policy formulation and development of plans for intervention and support to improve the industry.

  The exercise is being carried out under the FAO’s five-year Sustainability of Fisheries and Aquaculture Value Chains in Africa, Caribbean and Pacific otherwise known as FISH4ACP Project.

  According to Leader of the team and National Project Officer of the Fish for ACP Project, Abubakar Usman, the project is being carried out in twelve African, Caribbean and Pacific Countries and Nigeria is one of the four countries selected in West Africa for the project, while the other countries include Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal and The Gambia.

  Usman further explained that the Catfish value chain was selected as the focus area for the project in Nigeria and Anambra state is among the six states selected in Nigeria for the project because of its level of commitment in the Fisheries and Aquaculture sector as well as the institutional structure, policies and projects which have placed her at a vantage position to drive the envisaged industrial development of the sector.

  The FISH4ACP National Project Officer in Nigeria said their visit to Anambra State is therefore to give them first hand opportunity to interact with fish producers, retailers, wholesalers, processors and those in the support system and markets to understand their challenges, strengths and areas of need which will form the major part of the implementation of the project that will start from the second year of the five years that the project will run, the first year   being for data gathering and workshops.

  For the FISH4ACP Project Consultant in Nigeria, Aisha Lawal-Ibrahim, Anambra’s readiness for the project is impressive as the state is the only one in Nigeria that has an agency solely focused on developing the Fisheries and Aquaculture Value Chain and commended the Anambra State Government for setting up the Anambra Fisheries and Aquaculture Business Development Agency, FABDA.

  Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Anambra Fisheries and Aquaculture Business Development Agency (FABDA), Emeka Iloghalu, said the state government in the past eight years has transformed fisheries and aquaculture value chain and economy into a veritable institutional order to make it derive maximum benefit from FISH4ACP Project in order to make it more impactful in economic development of the state.

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