SeyCCAT’s Chief Executive, Angelique Pouponneau, was invited by the World Bank to attend the first Growing Blue Conference in Mozambique focused on sustainable and shared use fo the ocean on the 23rd and 24th May 2019.
Pouponneau was invited to deliver a presentation at a high-level event on the 23rd May on financing the blue economy opened by the Prime Minister of Mozambique,Carlos Agostinho do Rosário.
Pouponneau mapped Seychelles’ journey from a high-level political vision to a commitment to protect 30% of the Exclusive Economic Zone and a debt-buy back to a strategic Blue Economy Roadmap with priorities for strategic action and investment to create sustainable wealth, shared prosperity and securing healthy, resilient and productive ocean. She focused on how the blue bonds is delivering the finance to transition Seychelles fisheries to sustainably managed and internationally accredited, with increased profitability through value-addition and post-harvest activities and fisheries related services. Pouponneau focused on how SeyCCAT is providing grants financing for small-medium enterprises to enable to pilot and trial business ideas, learn lessons and de-risk to enable it to make sounder and less risky investments when it chooses to further and develop through a blue loan from the Blue Investment Fund. The Blue Investment Fund is offering blue loans at a 4% interest rate compared to 11-13% interest rate at a commercial bank. She emphasised that the funds from the blue bonds is also, embedded on the presumption that a healthy ocean is the only way to secure sustainable fisheries as US$ 1.5 million is dedicated to support sustainable use zones and US$ 1.5 million to fisheries and blue economy businesses. Finally, she reiterated the importance of having private sector and local communities buy-in to implement the blue economy.
In attendance of this high level event included Mozambique’s Minister of Finance, Directors of the World Bank and the African Development Bank and other Trust Fund managers from Mozambique.
At the conference, Pouponneau moderated a session on eco-tourism with speakers focusing on how to generate sustainable tourism to power the blue economy.
Finally, Pouponneau was able to meet with the Chief Executive, Mr Memdede Nemane of the National Sustainable Development Fund of Mozambique which was created to promote and finance programs and projects that support “sustainable, harmonious and inclusive” growth. They agreed to continue to share good practices and lessons learned and a visit of Mr Nemane to the Seychelles will be scheduled in the upcoming year.