By Charles Tjatindi
Pollution due to heavy industrialisation, spillage of oil and chemicals continues to cause untold detrimental effects on the sea.
The ‘rape’ of the sea, as Dr Abraham Iyambo, Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources calls it, poses a threat to the existence of human beings if left unattended.
Iyambo also noted that human-induced global warming eats at the roots of the economy and reduces returns on investments. The minister made these remarks when he inaugurated a new fish factory of the Pereira Group at Walvis Bay recently. Iyambo called on stakeholders and the public to protect and sustainably utilise fishery resources. He noted that current generations have to responsibly think about the survival of unborn generations.
“We are assembled here to celebrate and give thanks to the sea, the premier foundation and safest pillar of human existence. Our resolve is to rationally manage our marine resources and accentuate their healthiness,” he said.
Iyambo praised the contribution of the Pereira Group to the Namibian economy and the fishing industry in particular, urging the group to impart know-how and skills to locals within the industry. He noted that due to the highly specialised skills required in the fishing industry, which not many Namibians have, it is essential for companies to have skills transfer programmes.
“The reason for having them (expatriates) is to do work where Namibians lack such skills. However, for Namibians to acquire such vital skills and experience, a dedicated training programme by companies is needed,” he said.
Iyambo added that expatriates might be used if it can be verified that Namibians do not have the specific category of skills required for the job, while training Namibians. He said the new reprocessing plant and cold storage facility confirm the confidence the Pereira Group has in Namibia as a formidable investment destination.
He commended the Pereira Group for investing at a time when exchange rates are unfavourable, international oil prices are high and market prices fluctuate.
“I emphasise that our expectation and wish is for you to do business, make money and create wealth, recover your investments, reinvest part of it, share your products with Namibians and diversify your customers in other continents,” said Iyambo.
He added that Namibia has an obligation towards investors, such as the facilitation and creation of a conducive environment for business entities to operate, flourish, create jobs, and make money.
The Pereira Group has over the years provided invaluable support to the Namibian fishing industry by supporting government’s initiatives, such as the “Eat more Namibian fish for life”. The group provided fish products for the campaign. The Pereira Group also provided the line ministry with one of its commercial vessels for research purposes