Mozambique catches just 2,433 tons of tuna from January to August

21 September 2018

Tuna fishing in Mozambique totalled 2,433 tons from January to the end of August, compared to an estimated potential of 200,000 tons, said the Deputy Director General of the National Fisheries Administration.

Estela Mausse, quoted by Mozambican news agency AIM, said the amount of tuna caught is far below the potential in Mozambican territorial waters that led to the founding of Mozambican tuna company Ematum.

Created in 2013 by the State Information and Security Service (SISE), Ematum contracted a US$850 million loan with which it acquired fishing and surveillance vessels and military equipment, which later became part of the hidden debt scandal contracted by two other public companies with State backing.

The Deputy Director General of the National Fisheries Administration also told AIM that she wanted Ematum to return to full operation and added, “I have information that it will start operating in 2019.”

Last April, Prime Minister Carlos Agostinho do Rosário announced the closure of Ematum and its replacement by a new company, Tunamar, under a partnership with US company Frontier Service Group.

The Prime Minister, speaking at the end of the parliamentary debate on the General State Account for 2016, said that the founding of the new company will cause Ematum’s fleet of 24 fishing boats to finally start operating after years of inactivity in the port of Maputo.

US businessman Erik Prince, chairman of Hong Kong-based Frontier Services Group, signed an agreement with the Mozambican government in December 2017 to establish a partnership to recover Ematum.

Mausse announced a review of the fees and fishing license to a minimum of US$50,000, “considering that the current values are very low.” (macauhub)