With the aim of strengthening the fishing industry, government is planning to develop an assistance programme which will offer grants to local fisherfolk.
Speaking in the House of Assembly where he delivered his Budget Address for the 2020 financial year, Premier and Minister of Finance Andrew Fahie said: “We are working on a programme to offer financial assistance to our fishermen and the development of fish processing businesses up to $100,000,”.
The Premier also revealed that his administration will be investing in the agriculture industry to ensure that both sectors fully recover from battering they received from the September 2017 hurricanes.
“Your government will support the establishment of commercial farming and fishing enterprises and active farming and fishing cooperatives. [Government] will explore the possibility of an agricultural and fishery curriculum at the H Lavity Stoutt Community College,” Fahie told the House of Assembly this week.
He further said government is currently exploring the possibility of creating private access roads and supporting infrastructure so agriculture workers can develop their farms.
According to a report from the Agriculture Minister under the previous NDP administration, Dr Kedrick Pickering, local agriculture workers suffered a collective loss of approximately $13 million from hurricanes Irma and Maria.
Of that sum, the loss of the fisheries industry was estimated at around $3 million. Farmers suffered the remaining $10 million loss.
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