A workshop with the aim of providing more information on the budgetary measures, facilities and incentives being offered to the fishermen communitywas held yesterday at the Recreational Centre of Trou D’Eau Douce. On that occasion, a refrigerated truck, to the tune of some Rs 3.2 million, was handed over to the Mauritius Fishermen Co-operative Federation Limited (MFCF) for their operations.
The Minister of Business, Enterprise and Cooperatives, Mr S. Bholah, the President of the MFCF, Mr F. Andy, the Registrar of Cooperative societies, Mr L.M Monvoisin and other eminent personalities were present at the event.
Minister Bholah, in his address, highlighted that a new impetus is being given to the cooperative sector so as to valorise the contribution of cooperatives in ensuring the successful development of the country. Over time, the cooperative movement has outreached several sectors including transportation, handicraft, finance, agriculture and fisheries is another emerging sector which promises great potentials, he underlined.
The Minister outlined a number of schemes put at the disposal of fisheries cooperatives. They include: 50% grant for the purchase of semi-industrial boats costing up to Rs 4 million; 60% grant (maximum Rs 60,000) for the purchase of engines of boats and fishing nets; 50% grant (maximum Rs 200,000) to registered fishermen forthe purchase of boats; the introduction of a Group Life Insurance Scheme in case of accidents at sea; and the allocation of a free ice box to all registered fishermen.
He underlined that ornamental fish farming has gained great importance and is in high demand due to low local production. The aim, therefore, is to leverage the fisheries sector and to support its diversification for the welfare of the fishermen community and cooperatives, he added.
Currently, Mr Bholah observed, some 22 cooperatives with some 450 fishermen are registered to the federation and are producing an average of some 75,000 kg of fish annually. He underscored that the purchase of a refrigerated truck, announced in the Budget 2018/2019, will facilitate the preservation and restoration of the stock of fisheries. On this score, he urged the participants to affiliate themselves with the MFCF to avail of the various facilities and incentives being provided.
Source: Government of Mauritius