More than 3,000 residents are expected to benefit from Ksh 3.2 billion in funding secured by European Union governors to cushion young people and women through employment opportunities.
The EU confirmed on Tuesday March 30 that it will provide funds to coastal counties to support blue economy projects that are expected to have a high impact on residents.
“Go Blue aims to strengthen the inclusive value chains of the blue economy, create wealth and transform the lives not only of people living in coastal areas, but of other UKTN as well,” said Katrin Hagemann , Deputy EU Ambassador to Kenya.
President Uhuru Kenyatta with Coast Governors Ali Joho (Mombasa, far left), Salim Mvurya
(Kwale, second from right) and Amason Kingi (right, Kilifi) at the State House on Wednesday 24, 2021.
The initiative dubbed Go Blue was launched in a virtual meeting and will cross Kilifi, Kwale, Mombasa Tana River, Lamu and Taita Taveta counties.
The governors of the six counties have confirmed that they have already identified high impact projects such as fisheries, aquaculture and maritime safety that will benefit more than 3,000 young people and women in the region.
Other sectors mentioned during the meeting include culture and tourism and land-sea spatial planning.
The Blue Economy project will be carried out in four years, the objective being to ensure that the coastal ecosystem is reorganized and that the inhabitants participate in part of the development activities on a full-time basis.
“Kenya’s coast is ‘a valuable ecosystem’ which has the potential to unlock opportunities for the sustainable development of the country,” Hagemann said.
Hagemann further noted that this program comes at a time when economic, environmental and social developments must be given the highest priority.
While confirming the EU’s commitment, a coastal economic bloc known as Jumuiya Ya Kaunti za Pwani (JKP) said EU money would create multiple job opportunities and jobs for coastal residents.
According to JKP Director General Emmanuel Nzai, the governor’s commitment to work together was starting to bear fruit.
“It’s a testament that the partnership between different regional counties, resource sharing communities and the world is working,” Nzai said.
The Blue Economy project aims to enable the sustainable use of ocean resources in economic growth and job creation to improve livelihoods in addition to having a healthy ocean ecosystem.
Hundreds of young people line up during an open employment campaign at a city hotel on Saturday May 26, 2018