Posted: Friday, September 24, 2021. 5:27 pm CST.
By Rubén Morales Iglesias: The Ministry of Blue Economy (MOBE) and Civil Aviation and the Belize Fisheries Department, in partnership with the Directorate General of Foreign Trade, participated on September 23-24 in the United Nations Regional Experience Sharing Workshop for the Caribbean and Central America. The workshop was held under the theme “Looking back and forging ahead”.
MOBE said the two-day workshop had then objective of discussing and sharing of experiences of the Oceans Economy and Trade Strategies (OETS) Project and its developed strategy and action plan for Belize, Barbados, and Costa Rica.
MOBE said that in Belize, the OETS project focused on two sectors: marine fisheries and seafood processing.
“The marine fisheries sector addresses the sustainable use and conservation of marine resources, capacity development, improving market access, domestic consumption and links to tourism and international markets; while the seafood processing component examines the labour characteristics at processing centers, improving market access: access to niche markets and domestic use,” said MOBE. “The project identified the significant potential for product development, value adding and the formalization of the domestic finfish market to improve the availability of more fish and fishery products to our population and foreign markets.”
The MOBE release said that Blue Economy and Civil Aviation Minister Andre Perez highlighted “the Government of Belize’s commitment to increasing Belize’s GDP through a thriving Blue Economy Development pathway that is harmonized, innovative and socially just, supported by a robust, science-based management regime of our aquatic resources and space to improve the livelihood of all Belizeans”.
Perez said MOBE is currently formulating its five-year strategy and plan for Belize’s Blue Economy. The strategy which will concentrate on marine finfish and seafood manufacturing sectors is expected to benefit Belize through a planned and structured approach to its ocean-based economic sector.
Barbados, Belize, and Costa Rica have benefitted from the supporting developing countries through the OETS Project that has the objective of improving the economic potential of specific and carefully chosen ocean-based sectors in each country.
This OETS projects in the three countries started in January 2018 and was implemented by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in cooperation with the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea (DOALOS) with the dedicated support of National Focal Points in each country.
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