The country’s fish catch from the Indian Ocean and main lakes is on the decline.
The Department of Fisheries said fish catch has dropped by over 20 per cent in the last 10 years due to overfishing and use of illegal fishing gear against a rising demand for fish. This has forced the country to import the delicacy.
To address this, the government has partnered with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (Ifad) in a Sh14 billion venture to support aquaculture farming.
The programme targeting 15 counties in Eastern, Central and Western Kenya is aimed at boosting economic activities among rural-based communities. The government will contribute Sh5 billion of the total venture cost while Ifad will give Sh6.7 billion in form of a loan. The balance will be raised by participating counties.
Aquaculture Business Development Programme National Coordinator Sammy Macharia said the programme will run for eight years. “It will also address issues of production and marketing, which have been major challenges to farmers,” he said.
Director of Planning in the department, Joseph Gatuma, said 50 per cent of the world fish production was from aquaculture, adding "we are working with partners to support farmers in aquaculture farming”.