The Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Senzeni Zokwana, has
welcomed the green light received on the proposed sea-based Aquaculture
Development Zone (ADZ) in Saldanha Bay, Western Cape, saying this enhances
sustainable aquaculture expansion in the bay.
Minister Zokwana said
this would further contribute towards the realisation of the aquaculture
aspirations of Operation Phakisa: Oceans Economy in terms of job creation,
increased primary production, increased gross domestic product contribution
and inclusive growth of the sector.
¡§Aquaculture development can significantly contribute towards alleviating
poverty, empowering local communities and enhancing food security. The
Saldanha ADZ has the potential to meet the Operation Phakisa production
target, and increase local employment in the area by unlocking up to 2 500
permanent direct jobs, which can contribute up to 25% towards current local
¡§It has the potential to increase investment into the area by over R400
million and the estimated direct revenue at full production could result to
over R800 million per annum. In addition, increased local production can
meaningfully assist with the substitution of seafood imports and therefore
realise social and economic impacts on a municipal, regional and national
level,¡¨ Minister Zokwana said.
Aquaculture has been practised in Saldanha Bay since the 1980s and is
considered as one of the primary locations for the culture of key commercial
cold water species, including oysters, mussels and salmon.
Previous studies indicate that one of the fundamental challenges in
realising the potential of aquaculture in Saldanha Bay was the lack of an
enabling regulatory environment.
The Operation Phakisa: Oceans Economy programme provides the platform to
create this environment through increasing access to land and water space,
as well as improving access to markets and funding.
As a result, there is significant interest from industry to expand current
operations and to start new projects in the area.
To date, 15 of the 35 registered Operation Phakisa aquaculture projects are
located in Saldanha Bay, with the majority of them being small, medium and
micro enterprises in the oyster and mussel subsector.