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The president did not touch on blue economy in SONA – NAFAG

The National Fisheries Association of Ghana (NAFAG) has expressed disappointment that the State of the Nation Address (SONA) presented by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo did not touch on the blue economy.

Mr Richster Amarfio, the vice president of NAFAG, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA), said that even though the bigger blue economy was an emerging issue globally, the President did not touch on it, a situation he described as disappointing.

The blue economy has been defined by many bodies to encompass the economic activities of ocean resources, water bodies, and their interlinked sectors, aimed at their sustainable use for economic growth, improved livelihoods, and the preservation of the ocean ecosystem.

Mr Amarfio said the SONA failed to address how Ghana would develop, manage, and situate its blue economy to derive the best out of it, adding that even the state of the fisheries sector was not tackled.

‘We didn’t hear anything on the blue economy, the state of our fisheries sector,
inland fishing, or aquaculture development; neither did he touch on how we are going to rebuild our fish stock,’ he stated.

He said having a healthy ecosystem and quality water system was very important to promoting the sector, stating, however, that illegal mining, which is one of the ways of destroying water bodies and aquatic life, was also not given attention by the president in his address.

He stressed that building landing beaches as infrastructure was not the solution to the many problems in the sector, noting that ‘landing beaches without enough fish stock and with high costs of operations will not benefit sector players.’

Meanwhile, President Akufo-Addo stated during the SONA that he would open the Jamestown fishing harbour this year, adding that his administration would continue to take decisive actions, such as the close season, to help safeguard the ocean’s capacity to regenerate and to continue to deliver substantial economic, environmental, and social value for the country’s development.

said to help address the incidence of premix fuel diversion and hoarding, the government in 2023 completed the installation of 50 out of 300 premix fuel automated dispensers, promising that the remaining dispensers would be installed by September this year to help optimise the distribution of premix fuel.

Source: Ghana News Agency