President John Dramani Mahama has said the country will take full advantage of the economic potential of shrimp farming.
He said projections by experts indicated that shrimp production could fetch the country about $2 billion revenue annually if the needed attention and support were given to the sector.
Inaugurating a pilot commercial shrimp farming project established by the Ghavie Aquaculture Company Limited at Ada-Foah in the Greater Accra Region yesterday, President Mahama said the astonishingly huge potential in shrimp farming meant it could overtake incomes from oil and gas.
“Ghana will follow the footsteps of countries such as Vietnam and India which have become major producers of fish,” he added.
The Ghavie Aquaculture Company Limited, a joint effort of some Ghanaian and Vietnamese investors, was established last year to provide jobs and food security and enhance economic development.
So far, 200,000 tiger shrimps and over 50,000 local white shrimps have been successfully grown.
Officials said the hatchery had the capacity to produce 15,000,000 shrimp post-larvae per month when it became fully operational.
In the long-term, the company wants to establish a training school at Ada, promote shrimps mariculture as a business in Ghana and engage Vietnamese experts to impart skills to Ghanaians.
Among its benefits, the shrimp initiative is estimated to create jobs for about 200,000 Ghanaian youth within five years, address the over-exploitation of marine stock and provide an affordable source of protein.
Collaboration with Vietnam
President Mahama said the government intended entering into a collaboration with Vietnam to boost aquaculture in the country, adding that he would ask the Finance Ministry to make funds available for the collaboration.
He indicated his government’s resolve to reduce the importation of fish, stressing that that would be achieved by making fish farming attractive to the people, especially the youth.
In that regard, he said, the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development was promoting a nucleus outgrower scheme.
The scheme, the President said, had targeted graduates in Agriculture from the universities and the agricultural colleges who would be given training and other forms of support to establish their farms.
The Vietnamese Ambassador to Ghana, Mr Ho Ngoc Hoang, said the Ghavie Aquaculture project was the first aquaculture project by Vietnamese in West Africa.
Vietnamese aquaculture, he said, was noted all over the world and indicated that his country was ready to support Ghana to develop its.
He said Ghana’s climatic conditions for growing shrimps were more favourable than those of Vietnam and expressed the hope that the country would take advantage of that to develop its potential.
My Nayon Bilijo, the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture, noted that the project had opened a new chapter in marine resource development.
Ada Paramount Chief
The Paramount Chief of Ada, Nene Abram Kabu Akuaku III, who chaired the ceremony, thanked the investors for choosing Ada Foah as their investment destination.
He recalled that over the years he had appealed to the government to create opportunities that would attract investors to the area and said the project was a testimony of how far the appeal had gone.
He appealed to others to invest in the area, since land was not a problem.
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