Kenya-Norway Blue Economy Webinar

Pangea Accelerator, in partnership with the Norwegian embassy, launched the first of a kind Blue Economy project; at the Blue Economy Webinar held on 8/4/2021.

With several initiatives around the blue economy being kicked off, all around the globe, more so in Africa, it was a delightful session where government, private sector, investors, students and like-minded Blue Economy ambassadors shared insights & actionable plans.

Kenyans’ leadership on the Blue Economy has inspired collaboration with nations, such as Norway who have been at the forefront of BlueEconomy for decades now. Since 2018, Kenyas’ efforts towards a sustainable & high-input ocean economy have been significant. This has opened up the country to opportunities for collaborations that will fast track the process.

Sustainable efforts towards the BlueEconomy have been in Norway’s DNA for decades now; making our partnership with Kenya very exciting”-Mr Jens Frolic

Kenya can follow the SDG blueprint while gearing towards high output facing economies, through the oceans’ economy. Norway, being the 2nd largest global fish exporter, sets a high learning pace for Kenya to follow through. Did you know, in 2020, Norway exported 2.7 million metric tanks of seafood?

The importance of having synergies between government & the private sectors has been critical for the success of private players within the ecosystems- Jackton Ochieng’ from PWEZA fisheries notes.

The gaping gaps in the ecosystem, are what propelled them to start the company in 2017. With initiatives to recruit and train the local community, marine engineers, marine software among others in different capacities; fishing initiate the company

Acquisition of fishing vessels & insurance for the same has been one of the most capital intensive areas, which has forced Kenya to be over-reliant on overseas countries. Collaboration with Norway on acquiring fishing vessels to build a local fleet & skills development for engineers & captains would see a leap in value addition and growth of Kenya’s oceans’ economy.

This background alone forms a strong basis for inviting investors to join the sustainable development, high socio-economic impact project in Kenyas’ BlueOcean economy.

Country analysis, being the key framework around the investor decision-making process, places Kenya highly on this map. Besides access to hard currency, consistent currency value, Kenya especially stands out with the high remittance volumes. In 2020, diaspora remittances into Kenya covered the entire trade deficit. These are factors, that will open up the ecosystem to more investors in future. 

“The final goal for investors should be high impact on the socio-economic front while promoting the independence of the receptor countries”- Hans Jochum Horn

With a concise focus towards growing the Blue Economy sector, the Kenyan youth will have an inspiring environment in which they can tap into their creativity, to launch innovative business ideas bridging the gaps in this sector. With support from organizations like Norfund, start-ups are better placed to present strong business models that will attract long- term investments. This in turn ensures only high integrity businesses, with evident sustainable programs attract both financial & skill- set. support. Initiatives like Mikoko Pamoja, whose objective has been the restoration of mangroves through sales of carbon credits, has had a great impact on the South Coasts’ locals. This has been achieved through donor & investor support.

“We want to be involved in businesses that are value-adding to the locals first & eventual on a national level” William Nyaoke; Norfund

The opportunity for innovation to catalyse the success of the blue economy sector in Kenya is massive. Start-Up Norway has especially focused on supporting innovative businesses run by women: who has in the past been overlooked, as key players in the eco-system. Activating the young generation, in this journey, will incorporate progressive innovation around the ecosystem.

This is just a first step for the journey ahead. Be part of the BlueEconomy initiative with Pangea, by joining us in upcoming webinars and future opportunities. To strengthen our efforts to growing a sustainable economy, we need to synergize all the key players in the ecosystem. “Efforts towards the oceans’ economy will be an immediate covid recovery, generating job for our people.”- Ruth Kagia

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