In line with the joint effort by the African Development Bank Group (AfDB) and the Cameroon government to create jobs and raise household incomes, the bank is looking to support livestock and fish production with an €84 million ($98.3 million)loan as a strategy to reduce poverty.
The loan is geared towards the modernization of beef, pork and fish production, with significant improvements to food and nutrition in the country as well as reducing poverty, improving food and nutritional security in rural areas. The government has identified three main target areas; the North-West for production, and Central and Coastal for consumption to begin with before moving to other regions in the country.
The project will specifically target raising standards and competitiveness in such key livestock value chains as genetics improvement, feeding, slaughter, processing, conservation and transportation. Meanwhile, the focus of fish production will be on rearing, conservation, storage, and processing. AfDB’s policies include feeding Africa, industrializing the continent and improving the quality of life on the continent.
According to the latest national statistics, Cameroon produces 110,000 tons of fish, lower than the country’s 300,000 tons demand. To bridge the gap, 190,000 tons of fish are imported yearly. With the AfDB loan, the country can raise its production to meet its demand.
Key beneficiaries of the project will be stockbreeders and their cooperatives who constitute 45 percent of the pastoral sector labour force, fish farmers, traders, processing operators and about 350 higher education graduates that will be trained and settled as business leaders.
The project’s total cost is estimated at €99.27 million (CFAF 65.113 billion). The bank will provide a loan of €84 million (CFAF 55.1 billion) while the government will contribute €15.27 million (CFAF 10 billion).