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Unguja fish processing plant project in Zanzibar underway despite construction contract changes

Due to the company’s failure to execute the Unguja fish processing plant project, the ZANZIBAR government recently terminated its contract with the “Hairu Group of Companies” of Sri Lanka.

A contract to construct the Unguja fish processing plant in the coastal area was signed in May last year, by a Sri Lankan company in partnership with Zanzibar Fisheries Company (ZAFICO). 

The initiative was envisioned to result in at least 450 direct jobs. It was also expected to boost the economy of the Isles, but the company has not moved further with it.

Unfortunately, according to President Hussein Mwinyi, the Hairu Company did not have any funds for the project.

He stated that they have opted to terminate the deal. They have directed ZAFICO to commence implementation on its own while they seek another potential investor.

He claimed that the project will progress as planned. ZAFICO is already moving forward with the project. He also added that people could expect the fishing processing plant to be operational in the near future, in addition to promoting fishing in the deep sea, where it is yet to be tapped.

According to ZAFICO’s Minister Suleiman Masoud Makame, the project is one of the key projects in the ruling party’s 2020–2025 election manifesto. ZAFICO is a part of the Ministry of Blue Economy and Fisheries.

During the signing occasion at the ministry in the city’s Maisara area, the minister stated that President Mwinyi has been working relentlessly to find methods to develop the blue economy. The efforts are meant to establish a strong economy in the future.

How will the Unguja fish processing plant impact Zanzibar?

According to the minister, the project’s success would improve Zanzibar’s economy. Also, it will improve the standard of living of its people, notably the fishing community.

He urged people and other relevant institutions to support the initiative in achieving their goal.

The project was initially intended to include the construction of a leading boat building facility. The facility would be equipped to produce boats from six to thirty meters in length in steel and fiberglass. 

Boat building and maintenance services were explained as an essential component of the project. The project would support the country’s fisheries and blue economy as well as the tourism, maritime affairs, maritime security, maritime transport, and research industries.

As part of its value-added plan for fish, the Zanzibar government is keen on seeing the project through to completion.

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