Unlocking the potential
of sustainable fisheries and aquaculture
in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific

Unlocking the potential of Cameroon’s shrimps

FISH4ACP value chain analysis can show the way to stronger and more sustainable shrimp sector in Cameroon

15 March 2022, Douala – Cameroon’s shrimp sector has great potential for economic growth and social benefits without increased burden on the environment, according to an assessment presented today to over 60 stakeholders and experts. They agreed that an overhaul of the sector is needed to unlock its potential and discussed ways to bolster growth sustainably.  

“There can be no doubt about the benefits of shrimp fishing for large sectors of our society,” said Dr Taiga, Minister of Livestock, Fisheries and Animal Industries, on the occasion of a meeting in Douala today presenting the results of an assessment of the industry. “However, the sector needs serious upgrading to provide better food for our people, support our economy, create jobs and care for future generations by keeping the ecological footprint in check,” he added.

According to the assessment conducted by FISH4ACP and the Institute of Fisheries Sciences, the shrimp trade is worth around USD 85 million per year. Industrial players account for some 80% of catches, while artisanal fishers catch the remaining 20%. The sector employs some 2 000 people, one third of them women and provides affordable and healthy food to a large part of Cameroons population.  

Cameroon is one of the twelve countries covered by FISH4ACP, an initiative of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) implemented by FAO to make fisheries and aquaculture value chains in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific more productive and sustainable.  

The initiative started activities in Cameroon last year with an in-depth analysis of the shrimp value chain, the results of which were presented today to over 60 stakeholders and experts in the shrimp value chain.  

“We welcome this sector-wide dialogue on bolstering the economic, social and environmental sustainability of the shrimp value chain,” said Philippe Gatineau, representing the European Union (EU), which is funding FISH4ACP in conjunction with the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). He added: “FISH4ACP’s participatory approach is the right way to improve the competitiveness of the shrimp sector in a sustainable way.”  

The meeting in Douala will last for three days, during which the stakeholders and experts will review the outcomes of the assessment and start discussing ways to strengthen the sector - setting the agenda for FISH4ACP’s activities for the years to come.  

“FISH4ACP’s holistic approach can rise to the multidimensional challenge of sustainable fisheries development,” said Athman Mravili​, FAO’s Representative in Cameroon, adding: “Innovative solutions are needed to unlock the potential of Cameroon’s shrimp sector.”  

Looking ahead, Athman Mravili said that FISH4ACP could focus on helping both industrial and artisanal fishers grow their business, while working with the government to improve the framework of sanitary regulations. Other issues of attention include security at sea and the demarcation of fishing areas from oil-extraction zones, he added. FISH4ACP could also support initiatives to improve stock management and reduce by-catch to make Cameroon’s shrimp sector more environmentally sustainable.