Senior Programme Coordinator Giacomo Rambaldi and Senior Technical Advisor for Policies and Markets Yihenew Zewdie met staff from the Ministry of Fisheries and Agriculture. They also had talks with the Department of ICTs, the Seychelles Fisheries Authority and the Seychelles Agricultural Agency, and with representatives of the Fishing Boat Owners Association (FBOA) and the NGO, Sustainability for Seychelles.
The visit was part of CTA’s move to present and explore partnership opportunities concerning the Centre’s regional business plans (RBPs) tailored to each of the six ACP regions (the Caribbean, the Pacific, and Western, Central, Eastern and Southern Africa). The proposed partnership with the Seychelles concerns one of two key priority intervention areas for the Eastern Africa RBP – facilitation of inclusive value chains in selected agricultural commodities – and specifically, support to the small-scale/artisanal fisheries value chain of Indian Ocean Commission (IOC) member states.
Agreement still has to be reached on the type of support to be provided, but there is widespread optimism that CTA and the Seychelles will embark on a joint pilot programme on the promotion of inclusive fisheries value chain at the national level that will have scope for replication in the Eastern Africa region as a whole. In this respect, it was understood that this pilot programme falls in line with the priorities identified in the country’s draft Seychelles National Agricultural Investment Plan, which is based on the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP).
Also discussed were further ICT training opportunities in the Seychelles, exchanges of information and publications, cross-learning from other ACP regions, information support to the setting up of a pest monitoring network and a possible Participatory 3D Modelling exercise. As part of the agreement reached during the mission, face-to-face training on Web 2.0 and Social Media was conducted during the past two weeks. This attracted a total of 25 participants. Additional two training sessions on the same subject matter are envisaged to be organised during the coming six months.
Finally, together with the Seychelles Fishing Authority, it was agreed to identify mobile applications in support of the data and information needs of the fisheries value chain in the country - a scheme which was also welcome by the FBOA. The idea of organising exchange visits between the FBOA and pertinent fisherfolk associations in the Caribbean or Pacific was also explored, as was the potential for strengthening the sub-regional network for fisherfolk in IOC countries.