TOGO – The Togolese government has revealed plans to invest US$3.3 million (2 billion FCFA) in the fishing and aquaculture sector in 2024, as part of its ongoing efforts to develop the sub-sector.

The allocated funds represent almost 70% of the budget assigned to the Ministry of Maritime Economy for the year 2024, which amounts to US$5.1 million (3.1 billion FCFA).

The investment will primarily support the Aquaculture Development Project in Togo (PDAT), a project initiated in 2022.

The government aims to experiment with innovative approaches such as the fish aggregation device to address periods of fishery resource scarcity. Additionally, there will be a focus on the integration of youth from aquaculture training centres into the sector.

Edem Kokou Tengué, the Minister of Maritime Economy and Fisheries, emphasized the commitment to promoting better integration of young people in aquaculture, particularly with the support of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

The government also plans to experiment with aquaculture in the Savanes region.

Fishing and aquaculture contribute significantly to the national economy, employing over 20,000 people and contributing nearly 4.5% to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), according to data from the Ministry of Maritime Economy.

In 2023, the Togolese government injected US$1.8 million (1.1 billion FCFA) into the fishing and aquaculture sector. The increased allocation for 2024 reflects the government’s continued emphasis on the development of this vital sector.

The PDAT project, initiated two years ago, aims to enhance national fish production. The investment will contribute to the implementation of the project and support initiatives that align with the broader goal of increasing fish production in Togo.

Fishing employs more than 4 million people in Togo, and the sector has experienced growth, with production increasing from 730 tonnes to 1,151 tonnes from 2020 to 2022. Artisanal fishing has also seen a positive trend, with a 50% increase in 2022, reaching 6.6 million kg.

The fishing and aquaculture sector plays a crucial role in Togo’s economy, and the government’s continued investment underscores its commitment to sustainable development and the well-being of its citizens.

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