Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Kenya to Focus on Blue Economy to Achieve Prosperity: Official
2018/10/30 21:27:46

Kenya plans to focus on the blue economy in order to achieve prosperity for its people, an official said on Tuesday.

Macharia Kamau, principal secretary in the ministry of foreign affairs, told journalists in Nairobi that for the last 50 years Kenya has focused on the brown economy and neglected the oceans and seas.

"We need to build the capability of those living in the oceans and sea so that they can exploit opportunities that exist in the blue economy," Kamau said during a ceremony where Qatar gave a donation of some 500,000 US dollars towards the hosting of the High Level Conference on Sustainable Blue Economy which will take place from Nov. 26 to 28.

The outcome of the conference is expected to form part of the global conversation on sustainable development of the blue economy.

Kamau said that Kenya has faced many challenges in trying to exploit its marine resources despite having a sea front that is 1,000 kilometers long.

He noted that over 80 percent of fish products consumed locally come from lakes and rivers with the remainder from the oceans.

"We have not been able to exploit our own oceans so that we ensure that at least 90 percent of proteins come from the oceans and seas like other countries," he added.

Kamau said that beyond fish there are many other resources such as minerals in the ocean that can create wealth and employment opportunities for Kenyans.

According to the government official, preparations for the High Level Conference on Sustainable Blue Economy are now complete.

"We are now working on the logistics of the conference and matters of execution of the program itself," he added.

Kenya expects about 190 countries to participate, out of which 129 have confirmed so far with about three weeks to go.

In addition, Kamau said that in the next few days all those who registered through the United Nations are expected to come on board the conference.

He revealed that at the moment 4,200 participants have signed up with another 2,000 expected to register in the next few days.

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