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NFCPT embarks on wider distribution project


In an effort to ensure that fish is distributed to more consumers across the country, the Namibia Fish Consumption Promotion Trust (NFCPT) has partnered with selected third parties.

The partnership, which involved 13 distribution agents from 11 regions, was established through a pilot Agency Distribution Project (ADP) with agreements signed in Walvis Bay on Friday.

According to NFCPT Chief Executive Officer, Victor Pea, the pilot project was initiated after NFCPT realised that its expansion had made it difficult for small fish distributors in towns where it operates to compete with the trust, leading to some businesses closing or experiencing a decline in their fish sales.

‘While NFCPT expanded and saw an increase in fish distribution year-on-year, our growth inadvertently isolated us and somewhat conflicted with our aim to make fish more accessible to Namibians. Therefore, in 2017, when we were formulating the new Strategic Plan, management proposed a change in mission, shifting from aspiring ‘To be the p
referred fish distributor in Namibia’ to being ‘The catalyst for fish consumption for a healthy Namibia’,’ Pea explained.

He added that this change in focus means NFCPT is transitioning from being competitive to being collaborative and empowering, and it is this shift that gave rise to the idea for the ADP. The Distribution Model, with an initial investment of N.dollars 807,200, is a collaboration between NFCPT and the Namibia University of Science and Technology’s Business Innovation Institute.

Phase 1 of this project took place in 2022, where an information and training session was held for interested individuals, who subsequently applied for selection as agents.

The agents comprise 13 companies, ensuring, according to Pea, good gender and youth representation.

Chairperson of the NFCPT Board of Trustees, Suzan Ndjaleka, noted that during the project spanning over six months, NFCPT will evaluate the financial viability and performance of the 13 distribution agents.

‘The data collection during the pilot
phase will be crucial, not only for deciding whether to fully implement this project, but also to assess what kind of support is necessary for a successful partnership between NFCPT and distributors,’ she stated.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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Business

Over 5000 jobs expected from ACC salmon farming


The African Aquaculture Company (ACC) is expected to provide about 5000 jobs through direct and indirect beneficiation, full production, in-house and services, logistics and construction.

This will be due to the company’s acquisition of an ‘Offshore Commercial Phase’ license, which will pave the way for Sub-Saharan Africa’s first commercial salmon farming and production facility.

ACC is a subsidiary of the Norway-based Norwegian African Aquaculture Company.

In a media statement issued on Friday, the company’s Operations President in Namibia, Clement Kaukuetu, noted that the license is operational for 15 years.

With operations mainly focused in three offshore sites; north-west of Lderitz in the ||Kharas region. The AAC, according to Kaukuetu, will be producing high value and omega rich Atlantic Salmon for export as well as domestic markets.

‘Relying on Norwegian expertise, the AAC anticipates the initial phase to commence in early May with projected production capacity of 50 thousand tonnes per annum.

Th
e salmon farms are envisaged to contribute to the socio-economic progression of the country through infrastructure development, job creation and skills transfer,’ Kaukuetu noted.

He added that the AAC is cognizant of the beginning of the industry is embarking on the establishment of a local Salmon Farming Association to invite more players into the globally lucrative salmon fishing industry.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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Business

Namibia Local Content Conference commences at Lderitz


Shepherdstree managing partner Ekkehard Friedrick highlighted Namibia’s oil discovery success rate on Tuesday, saying the country has an 86 per cent success rate in terms of exploration compared to the global average of 30 per cent.

Friedrick made the remarks during a presentation held as part of the Namibia Local Content Conference in Lderitz on Tuesday, saying Namibia’s oil discoveries offshore are progressing at a rapid rate.

‘We are moving at an unprecedented rate. That can be good but can also be bad because we might be taking shortcuts that we are not aware of in terms of environmental laws and so on, but if we do this correct, we have the opportunities to create wealth because we have a low population,’ he said during his presentation on the topic ‘The Namibian Oil and Gas story – globally significant finds vs. local opportunity.’

He added that Namibia in 2023 was part of the four top countries in the world in terms of oil discovery.

John Ferraz, an executive for projects at the Edward Nathan Sonne
nbergs law firm said more opportunities for entrepreneurs lie in supporting the oil and gas industry and urged them to form joint ventures.

‘When you consider the range of services needed to support those teams at sea and when the vessels come in is massive. Even supplying water to those who are on sea working is a business opportunity on its own, I know there are a lot of local content policies that drive manufacturing, but I will say to Namibians concentrate on joint ventures, concentrate on low capital requirements for entry into these opportunities,’ he stressed.

Ferraz added that it is important that Namibia sends a message to investors that local content provides an enabling and supporting environment and is not a barrier.

‘The oil and gas industry is an opportunity for celebration and not for tribulation. You are not starting an industry, you are joining an existing industry. It might be seen that in the oil and gas industry, local content is an issue and it is not. Investors want two things – certa
inty and to keep their costs down. Their rules are clear as long the rules do not present a barrier,’ he said.

The three-day conference is aimed at providing a platform for dialogue, collaboration and the exchange of ideas that will shape the future of the oil and gas industry.

The conference is being held under the theme ‘Empowering Namibia’s energy ambitions by connecting industries and indigenous talent’ and about 300 people from Namibia, Angola, Nigeria, Dubai, South Africa and England are taking part in the conference hosted by the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Antila Consultancy.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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Business

Iipumbu emphasises SEZ Bill’s importance for economic growth


The Minister of Industrialisation and Trade, Lucia Iipumbu, has emphasised the importance of ensuring that the Special Economic Zones (SEZ) Bill is fit for purpose and guarantees that an avenue for value addition is created to generate jobs.

According to the minister, the establishment of SEZ can significantly boost industrialisation, enhance export capabilities, and stimulate economic growth, especially as Namibia readies itself to participate fully in the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

Adopted in August 2022, the SEZ Policy includes a provision for both fiscal and non-fiscal investment incentives for various investment categories such as exporters and manufacturers.

Iipumbu, who was speaking at stakeholder consultations on the drafting of the SEZ policy, national informal economy, startups and entrepreneurship development policy in Walvis Bay on Monday, noted that these legislations are key in shaping the economic dimension of Namibia which can ultimately result in significant growth and de
velopment of the country.

‘Firstly, SEZs have over the years proven to be a catalyst for economic transformation around the globe, which is done through creating specific areas with favourable business conditions and incentives advanced by government, in order to boost and attract both domestic and foreign investments, foster innovation, and generate employment opportunities,’ the minister said.

It is for this reason that the ministry embarked on a journey to tailor the SEZ concept to Namibia’s unique needs and aspirations in order to eventually have it as a law to replace the Economic Processing Zone (EPZ) regime, which has thus far brought about various challenges.

Erongo hosts 3 981 business establishments, of which 3 286 were characterised as micro establishments, 453 as small establishments and 195 as medium establishments respectively.

Governor Neville Andre Itope said that only 47 establishments in the region constitute large establishments.

‘Therefore, it becomes important that our engagements ar
e focused on advancing these businesses, to help them grow by creating a conducive and enabling legislation, operational environment that will eventually stimulate optimal growth and investment of these and future prospective ones,’ he added.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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Business

NSI takes Metrology Act to Omaheke


The Namibian Standards Institution on Tuesday, during their stakeholder awareness campaign, engaged representatives of the Omaheke Region on the newly enacted Metrology Act, Act 5 of 2022.

The meeting at Gobabis attracted stakeholders from government institutions and business people including farmers from the region, with the aim of creating awareness of the new Act before its implementation.

Omaheke Regional Governor Pijoo Nganate, who was the keynote speaker, highlighted the importance of the new Act to Omaheke as a region and how it will transform the regional economy to the benefit of its people, especially farmers.

‘Metrology encompasses the principles in our daily lives, from the weight of the cattle we raise to the distance our goods travel across borders. Metrology ensures that these measurements are accurate, reliable and standardised,’ he noted.

Nganate furthermore indicated that because the region is known for its cattle farming, precision in measurement is crucial.

‘Accurate measurements of l
ivestock health, feed quantities and milk production are crucial for maximising productivity and ensuring animal welfare. The new Metrology Act will provide farmers with the tools and standards necessary to make informed decisions and optimise their farming practices, leading to increased efficiency and profitability,’ Nganate said.

The governor urged all stakeholders to familiarise themselves with the new Act and embrace the opportunities it will present in the region and the country at large.

‘This legislation is more than just numbers and standards, it is about ensuring a bright and prosperous future for our livestock farming and industrial community,’ he said.

Simasiku Matali, the head of metrology at the Namibian Standards Institution indicated that the new Act is aimed at informing and capacitating the nation on changes to the metrology legal framework. On administration and enforcement related matters, he also shared that they are engaging all stakeholders in the 14 regions of Namibia.

‘The Act cam
e at a time when Namibia is experiencing a growing need for accelerated metrology services and regulatory framework as a result of domestic and international market access,’ he said.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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Business

TransNamib appoints Van Jaarsveld as new CEO


Desmond Ernst Van Jaarsveld has been appointed as the new chief executive officer (CEO) of TransNamib.

Van Jaarsveld replaced Johny Smith, who left the company last year.

A press statement issued by TransNamib on Monday indicated that Van Jaarsveld takes up office as from 17 April 2024.

TransNamib Chairperson Theo Mberirua congratulated Van Jaarsveld on his appointment, saying he is an excellent addition to TransNamib. He said TransNamib and rail infrastructure play a critical role in positioning Namibia as a logistics leader in the region, and the board is confident that Van Jaarsveld will lead TransNamib towards sustainable growth.

He added that Van Jaarsveld has proved he is fit for the role and current challenges that TransNamib faces.

‘I am confident that his leadership at TransNamib will further strengthen our industry and benefit the company,’ Mberirua said.

The statement said Van Jaarsveld brings extensive experience in business and leadership to his new role at TransNamib, with over 30 years of
professional experience in various industries, including over 25 years which has been at senior executive leadership level within the transportation, logistics and distribution sectors within the Southern African region.

Van Jaarsveld holds a Master of Science and Bachelor of Science from the University of Stellenbosch. He has also completed a Management Development Programme with the University of Stellenbosch Graduate Business School, amongst various other management and coaching certificates.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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Business

NaTIS introduces learner’s licence testing in Omuthiya


The Roads Authority (RA) has announced the introduction of learner’s license tests at the National Administration Traffic Information System (NaTIS) office in Omuthiya as from 26 April 2024.

RA spokesperson Hileni Fillemon in a statement on Monday said bookings for learner’s licence tests will commence on this date and will be available from Monday to Friday.

‘Customers seeking to book for learner’s licence tests should bring along a N.dollars 50 fee and a certified copy of their Identity Document (ID),’ said Fillemon.

She said bookings for learner’s licence testing can only be done in person as the RA does not have an online booking system. Operating hours at the Omuthiya NaTIS office are 08h00 until 15h30, Monday to Friday.

NaTIS spokesperson, Constance Mwilima said they are happy to be able to finally offer learner’s licence tests in Omuthiya as it could not be done when the office opened in 2020 due to a shortage of staff.

NaTIS currently operates from the Omuthiya Town Council building and offers se
rvices such as renewal of driver’s licences and other counter services.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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Business

Japanese funding boosts nutrition projects for vulnerable communities


WINDHOEK: The Japanese government has funded two joint projects aimed at increasing access to quality nutrition for vulnerable Namibian communities to the tune of N.dollars 23.5 million over a period of 12 months.

The joint projects between the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations aim to ‘Increase access to quality nutrition and protection services for vulnerable populations, including women and children, in the Omaheke, Khomas and Kunene Regions.’

Another initiative, ‘Emergency response to enhance resilience and mitigate climate-induced impacts on livelihoods, food and nutrition security of the most vulnerable household in Namibia in the Kavango East, Kavango West and Ohangwena Regions,’ was also launched.

Speaking at the launch here on Monday, Japan’s Ambassador to Namibia, Hisao Nishimaki said the projects are funded under the Japan Supplementary Budget in support of the efforts of the Namibian Government. He said since 2013, 24 projects h
ave been funded and implemented successfully by various United Nations agencies to a total cost of N.dollars 320 million, excluding the two newly launched projects.

‘The need for support in the health and agriculture sectors is great since everybody needs health care and it is said that more than 70 per cent of the Namibian population depends on agriculture directly or indirectly,’ he said.

At the same event, WHO and FAO representative Dr Mary Brantuo said the projects will be carried out through the Ministry of Health and Social Services and the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Land Reform, as well as regional councils.

She noted that the projects will increase access to nutrition interventions to prevent and manage malnutrition among women and children in their immediate communities; strengthen the protection of women and children against violence, exploitation and abuse; diversify rural livelihoods; and enhance food production capacity through the distribution of strategic assets and agro-inputs, amon
gst others.

‘Together we can make a tangible difference in the lives of those who need it most,’ she said.

Minister of Health and Social Services Dr Kalumbi Shangula meanwhile said the scourge of malnutrition is being experienced in several communities in Namibia.

‘While it is a complex matter, the simplest understanding of malnutrition refers to the lack of proper nutrition, caused by not having enough to eat, not eating enough of the right food, or the body of the person affected not being able to use the food that one does eat. For this reason, dealing with and eradicating malnutrition requires a multisectoral, whole-of-government and whole-of-society approach,’ he noted.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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Business

Namibia local content conference taking place at Lderitz this week


KEETMANSHOOP: The Namibia Local Content Conference is scheduled to take place in Lderitz in the ||Kharas Region from Tuesday to Thursday this week.

The conference is organised by Antila Consultancy Oil and Gas in conjunction with the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI), and it is being held under the theme ‘Empowering Namibia’s Energy Ambitions by Connecting Industries and Indigenous Talent’.

In a statement issued to Nampa on Monday, NCCI Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Charity Mwiya, described the conference as a distinctive platform for private sector players and government to interact, share experiences and identify investment and collaboration opportunities.

‘The conference will address key themes such as local content, capacity building, knowledge, and skills transfer, all of which have the potential to unlock growth and development in the oil and gas sector. It is an ideal platform for meaningful dialogue to foster and share information and encourage cooperation, identify local content oppo
rtunities, and create a sustainable energy sector in Namibia,’ she said.

Mwiya highlighted that the energy sector is not only a driver of economic prosperity, but also a catalyst for local development and empowerment, adding that local content is important in the energy sector as it can contribute not only to the growth of the industry, but also to the well-being of the communities in which businesses operate.

‘With recent oil and gas discoveries that suggest Namibia is on the verge of a historic oil boom, there is much work to be done to prepare local businesses, particularly MSMEs, for opportunities presented by this industry,’ said Mwiya.

Maria Mbudhi, CEO of Antila Oil and Gas, is quoted in the statement as saying, ‘This conference is testament to our collective belief that, by working together, we can overcome challenges, capitalise on opportunities, and chart a course towards a more sustainable, locally driven oil and gas sector, and the development of respective auxiliary industries.’

Mbudhi noted
that the conference is not merely about addressing challenges, but also about harnessing collective intelligence to co-create solutions that will stand the test of time, and finding ways to curb corruption.

‘We understand that true industry growth and resilience can only be achieved by cultivating a thriving ecosystem of local businesses, each contributing its unique strengths to the collective advancement of our sector,’ said Mbudhi.

Industry leaders, international oil companies, international service companies, and internationally registered delegates from countries such as Nigeria, Angola, India, Dubai and South Africa are expected to be in attendance

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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Business

Brown water safe for consumption: CoW


WINDHOEK: The City of Windhoek (CoW) has confirmed the change in tap water to a brown shade in some areas of the capital, saying it is safe for consumption and is a result of the utilisation of boreholes to supplement supply.

In an interview with Nampa on Monday, CoW Spokesperson Harold Akwenye said the change experienced by some residents, particularly in areas like Windhoek West and Eros, is due to the natural mineral composition of the water from boreholes, which can differ from the usual water supply.

‘Despite the change in colour, it’s essential to assure residents that the water remains safe for consumption,’ he said.

Akwenye explained that CoW adheres to strict quality control measures to ensure that the water supplied to residents meets national drinking water standards, noting that while the brownish tint may be aesthetically unappealing, it does not compromise the safety or quality of the water.

He added that it is important for residents to understand that the current drought conditions have ne
cessitated the activation of alternative water sources, such as boreholes, to mitigate the impact of water shortages.

‘The City of Windhoek is actively working to address the issue and is continuously monitoring water quality to ensure the well-being of its residents. Residents are encouraged to report any concerns about water quality to the relevant authorities for prompt investigation and resolution,’ he noted.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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Business

Stakeholder training on trade agreements crucial: MIT


SWAKOPMUND: There is a need for different stakeholders to participate in various regional and international trade agreements when actively seeking new investment opportunities and enhanced foreign market access.

This is according to the Executive Director in the Ministry of Industrialisation and Trade (MIT), Sikongo Haihambo, who said in order to ensure maximised benefits from these engagements, stakeholders need to enhance their capacity and skills in trade policy and competitiveness analysis, trade statistics and negotiations skills, among others.

Haihambo was speaking on Monday at the opening of the five-day MIT training on trade policy and competitiveness analysis, trade statistics, trade negotiations skills, investment and trade promotion strategies, as well as Economic Partnership agreements (EPA) monitoring and evaluation at Swakopmund.

The training, which is being attended by officials from MIT, Namibia Investment Promotion and Development Board and line ministries working on trade and investment r
elated issues, will accord participants a privilege of delving into critical areas of focus, including trade policy and competitive analysis.

‘Accordingly, the expected outcome after this training is for us to use acquired knowledge and skills to enhance Namibia’s export and investment competitiveness and maximise benefits from trade agreements that we are party to,’ he said.

The ED highlighted that the training is one of the ministry’s deliverables under its Strategic Objective 3 of the Financing Agreement, namely; ‘Enhanced use of EPA opportunities by private sector operators.’

‘The training also underscores our commitment to nurturing Namibia’s skills development, economic growth, contributing to the promotion of sustainable development and advancing regional integration.’

The participants will be equipped with information on statistical methods used in policy and investment analysis such as the Harvard Atlas of Economic Complexity, ABRAMS world trade wiki, as well as presentation by the Namibia Statis
tics Agency on local sources/databases on Namibia Trade Statistics.

Additionally, the topics are said to be essential pillars upon which collective efforts to navigate the complexities of the global marketplace and also lie at the very heart of Namibia’s mission to create an enabling environment for trade and investment, thereby catalysing economic prosperity and improving the livelihoods for the country’s citizens.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

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MTC suspends thousands of its subscribers


WINDHOEK: Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTC) on Wednesday announced the suspension of roughly 323 236 subscribers from its network after failing to register their SIM cards by the 31 March deadline.

The mandatory SIM registration was introduced by the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRANs) in line with the provisions of Section 77 of the Communications Act of 2009 and commenced on 01 January until 31 December 2023, before it was extended to 31 March 2024.

MTC’s Chief Human Capital, Corporate Affairs, and Marketing Officer, Tim Ekandjo, in a media statement said the suspension does not imply that their numbers have been deactivated, but simply implies that a suspended number will be unable to use any services until it completes the SIM registration process.

The registration process, he said will span 90 days, starting on 01 April until 01 July 2024, or as otherwise directed by CRAN.

”If this grace period expires and no action is taken by the SIM owner, the number will be deactivated/d
eleted from the network permanently,’ he cautioned.

Ekandjo added that the 323 236 unregistered consumers account for around 3.1 per cent of revenue, or an average of N. dollars 8.1 million every month, noting that the mobile company has however registered 1 613 893 customers, representing an 83.3 per cent registration rate.

MTC has always maintained that it would require 24 months to successfully finalise the sim registration process, but despite MTCs best efforts, it has encountered challenges in finalizing the registration process for all customers, as previously communicated to the Authority – such as the geographical vastness of the country amongst other socio-economic conditions which made it impossible for some members of the public to register on time, he said.

”MTC would have welcomed an extended time to be able to register all our customers. Although it is not an ideal situation, the reality of the matter is that MTC must act accordingly and follow the directive to suspend numbers, as stipulated
by the Authority. Should any new development arise pertaining SIM registration, we will inform our consumers accordingly,’ he said.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency