The blue economy will provide job and entrepreneurship opportunities for youth and women in Kenya, according to speakers at a youth Blue economy pre-conference, organised by the National Youth Congress at the Un Habitat in Gigiri, Nairobi.
According to Siddharth Chatterjee, The UN resident coordinator and UNDP resident representative, the biggest opportunity for the youth in the blue economy are in Aquaculture, which is the fastest-growing food sector and provides about 50% of fish for human consumption.
Sid also noted that in the developed countries, communities that live around water bodies are the wealthiest, unfortunately, that is not the case for Kenya, and the focus on the blue economy provides an opportunity to make use of the ocean’s resources for economic growth.
The Blue Economy is an emerging frontier that aims to make sustainable use of ocean resources and the maritime to foster improved livelihood and job creation.
The ocean is reportedly one of the biggest economic frontiers, which is valued at around US$1.5 trillion per year. 80% by volume of all global trade is moved by shipping, then there offshore oil and gas and deep-sea mining, water sports.
GOVERNMENT TO TRAIN YOUTH ON BLUE ECONOMY
- 350 million jobs worldwide are linked to fisheries.
- By 2025 it is estimated that 34% of crude oil production will come from offshore fields.
- Aquaculture is the fastest-growing food sector and provides about 50% of fish for human consumption.
Dr. Francis Otieno Owino, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs said that the government is committed to educating and motivating the youth in the maritime domain.
“The ministry will be financing youth innovations, ocean studies and scientific exploitation to enhance the commercial benefits of oceans resources,” Dr Owino said.
The youth conference on the Blue Economy was an interactive meeting held ahead of the major conference that Kenya will be hosting in partnership with Canada and Japan starting 26-28 November at the Kenya International Conference Center (KICC).
The sustainable Blue Economy Conference is the first of its kind in the globe.
The more than 200 young men and women participants at the Youth Blue Economy Conference, collectively developed action plans
to be followed up and monitored beyond the conference.