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Japan Funds Multi Million Dalasi Fish Market for Brikama

Jul 9, 2008, 6:05 AM

The Ambassador of Japan to the Republic of The Gambia, His Excellency Mr. Takashi SAITO, and Mr. Gibril Seman JOOF, Gambia's Higher Commissioner to Senegal, recently signed the exchange note of a project for the construction of a multi million Dalasi fish market in Brikama within the framework of the Japanese grant.

The grant of 630 million Yen, about D126 million, is to finance the construction of a market hall with office space, a fish handling yard, a chill room and cooler boxes in Brikama. Fish boxes for fish storage and an ice-making machine for the conservation of the products will also be provided. A new water supply system will be installed to maintain a healthy hygienic environment. These facilities and equipment will ensure a better and more profitable distribution of the fish products of good quality by reducing the post harvest losses of the fish retail stage.

A media release forwarded to The Point last evening states that due to the special location of Brikama it is a key junction of transportation that links the coast and the inland. The demand for fish is increasing and Brikama market continues to expand. 

"The project mainly aims to achieve the sales of fresh and quality fish in a healthy environment by improving the conditions of fish retail markets in Brikama and its neighboring areas," revealed ambassador Takashi.

He said that, it also includes a soft component with technical assistance through a training programme on how to use facilities and equipment.

Fisheries is one of the key sectors of Japanese cooperation in The Gambia.

For more than three decades, the government of Japan has been making a contribution to the development of fisheries in the country through various projects including the establishment of fishing infrastructure and supply of related equipment to support fishing activities. 

"The sustainable development and management of this important sector offers prospects for social and economic development not only for the concerned regions but also throughout the land," he said.

"Like in Japan, fish is an important protein resource for the people of The Gambia and is essential for the improvement the nutritional standards of the population. Further more, the sector gives excellent opportunities for the creation of employment for many Gambians. I am particularly happy to be able to sign this agreement today just a few weeks after the conclusion of the Tokyo International Conference on Africa Development (TICAD IV), which was held Japan. On this occasion, our prime minister announced a package of the new initiatives to reinforce our cooperation for the development of Africa, including and in particular, doubling of our Overseas Development Aid to Africa by five years," he concluded. The Brikama Fish market project will be remembered as the first project agreed between Japan and The Gambia after the TICA IV.