Lüderitz — The Namibia Fish Consumption Trust (NFCPT) opened a new fish shop in Lüderitz, last Friday. The shop consists of a retail area, fish processing area, cold store, canteen and one office. It was constructed at a cost of N$5.3 million.
The facility, which will have five staff members, is targeted at about 15,000 inhabitants of Lüderitz.
Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources Bernhard Esau officially inaugurated the opening ceremony, which was preceded by a minute of silence in memory of Dantago Nicodemus //Hoabeb, the Deputy Chairperson of Board of Trustees of the NFCPT, who passed away on April 18, 2018.
Esau described //Hoabeb as a sober-minded person, who he was glad to appoint not just as a trustee. "His words of wisdom, especially to NFCPT in its current process of implementing a turn-around strategy, will be greatly missed," said Esau.
The Lüderitz shop adds to 15 other NFCPT fish shops, which together employ 113 Namibians and are allocated in various regions of the country. Esau indicated that during the 2017/2018 financial year, these NFCPT shops distributed 6,943 metric tons of fish at affordable prices throughout Namibia.
"We are faced with a challenge of ensuring that Namibians consume more fish per capita than is currently the case, in keeping with our status as a major fishing nation in the world. Currently, or per capita consumption is about 11kg per person per year, which is way below the world average consumption of 20.5 kg of fish per person per year," he said.
"As I stated during my annual speech to the Fishing Industry on 16 February 2018, I am committed to raise our current fish consumption level to the world average of 20.4 per person per year during this financial year and, hence, unlock the enterprise development and food security potential of our fisheries nationally. This is one of the key performance measures for NFCPT during this financial year," said Esau.
The Chairperson of the Namibian Fish Consumption Promotion Trust Board, Suzan Ndjaleka, said the trust has, since its inception, made it its mission to rollout its presence in every corner of the country. Today it has covered 95 percent of the country with its retail footprint, with only two regions remaining to effect 100 percent coverage countrywide.
Ndjaleka assured the Zambezi Governor, Lawrence Sampofu, who was present during the NFCPT fish shop opening, that the Zambezi region is part of the remaining 5 percent. Ndjaleka said NFCPT is ready to open a fish shop in Zambezi and urged the region to avail land for NFCPT to open the fish shop.