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Oct 31, 2022

Development Policy, Strategy and Implementation Plan for Blue Economy 2022 to 2027 Presented

There is a Development Policy and Strategy and Implementation Plan for 2022 to 2027 for the Ministry of the Blue Economy. The priority areas for the policy and goals of the strategy were presented today and look forward to the next five years. It will deal with creating new opportunities in marine bio-diversity and livelihoods, while protecting the marine resources through strict guidelines. The strategy calls for a multi-sectoral approach from the Coast Guard and the Fisheries Department, but as the Minister of the Blue Economy, Andre Perez explained, the plan should benefit fisherfolks of Belize.


Andre Perez

Andre Perez, Minister of Blue Economy

“We understand the tradition, the culture of the fisherfolks, and sometimes they are out there. We have to look at ways how we can benefit for their boats. We have to educate them that a boat is no longer seen as a luxury and that comes from the government aspect. Someone who has a fishing boat, we might see it as luxury to buy an outboard (engine) but when you look at the agriculture sector, someone buying a tractor – there are benefits for them in terms of it’s a workhorse. It’s time for us from the Blue Economy aspect to look at this and say a fishing vessel is no longer luxury. It’s a workhorse. So we are looking that way to work with government and part of this framework is that it will have more direct benefits for fisherfolks.”


Elton Bennett

Rear Admiral Elton Bennett, Commander, Belize Coast Guard

“One of the very interesting aspects of this strategy is increasing our conservation areas means more resources. That requires us to do a lot more, and Belize Coast Guard is prepared to do a lot more in terms of reconfiguring what we’re doing and adding more resources to meet those demands. So that was an area where the Belize Coast Guard was very interested to find out what the expansion area would be and what would be the operating costs of meeting those demands. That’s where strategy alignment comes in to ensure that we revise what we’re doing and reconfigure our forces to say that this is now the emphasis – this is now the geographical area.”


Marion Ali

“It expands by how much?”


Rear Admiral Elton Bennett

“They’re initially looking at a thirteen percent increase in sea spaces in terms of conservation, so that’s a lot of waters in terms of sea space. But it’s pushing us more offshore. It’s pushing us inside the territorial seas, so it’s more than just the amount of sea space, it is where. So we’re looking at operations beyond the reef, so that means that we will need to acquire those capabilities that can perform those duties beyond the reef. “


Rigoberto Quintana

Rigoberto Quintana, Acting Fisheries Administrator

“Looking at new areas like deep sea fishing, for example. We’ll be working with the I.D.B. the Government of Taiwan to do some research assessment and see how best we can develop those areas in the deep water areas, also look at more value-added commodities and also develop the mariculture part, seaweed farming and at other aquaculture species in Belize.”


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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