February 16, 2024 (ENTEBBE, Uganda): The Intergovernmental Authority on Development, in collaboration with the Swedish Government (SIDA), convened a two-day meeting in Entebbe, Uganda, to strengthen the Uganda’s National Blue Economy (BE) Coordination Platform.

Representatives from various Ugandan ministries and authorities, including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Water and Environment, the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, the National Planning Authority, the National Environment Management Authority, Makerere University and national Fisheries resources research institute (NaFIRRI). participated in the meeting.

Albert Orijabo, the Blue Economy Focal Point and Assistant Commissioner in the Ministry of Water and Environment, speaking on behalf of the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Water and Environment, emphasized Uganda’s commitment to fostering an enabling environment for the development, management, utilization, and conservation of its blue economy resources. He highlighted the establishment of legal and policy frameworks, institutional capacity building, resource mobilization efforts, and political support as essential components of this commitment. Uganda’s ratification of regional and international treaties advocating for sustainable resource exploitation further underlined its dedication to this cause.

He stressed the importance of the Ugandan Blue Economy Strategy in facilitating inclusive, collaborative, and sustainable utilization of natural resources, particularly in the face of challenges such as climate change, food insecurity, economic fluctuations, and natural disasters.

Zoe Joy Kirunda, of the Regional Peace and Security Department Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Uganda, in her official opening speech noted that the National Blue Economy Strategy that was adopted in February 2023 is well aligned Africa’s Blue Economy Strategy as well as the IGAD and EAC Blue Economy Strategies. Uganda is committed in implementing the Strategy and that is why some of the Sectors are already factored within the National Development Plans. Uganda remains committed in working with development partners for an inclusive development of her people.

The objectives of the NBECP meeting were:

• Strengthening the National Blue Economy Coordination Platform in each IGAD member state.
• Enhancing Blue Economy governance nationally by fostering coordination among BE sectors.
• Assessing the necessary enabling tools (financing, capacity building, partnerships, and innovations) and management components required for the implementation of BE strategies and interventions.
• Providing technical assistance to IGAD member states in mobilizing resources for the implementation of their BE Strategy.
• Discussing mechanisms to integrate BE into national development plans.

The key outcomes of the meeting were:

• Functional national Blue Economy platform with terms of reference established.
• National Blue Economy national governance structured proposed.
• Initiation of project development to implement the national BE Strategy.
• recommendations Formulated to integrate the BE Strategy into national development plans.


The African Union has identified Blue Economy (BE) development as a priority goal towards achieving the aspiration on ‘A prosperous Africa based on inclusive growth and sustainable development within the context of the Africa Union Agenda 2063’. Africa’s Blue Economy can be a major contributor to continental transformation, sustainable economic progress, and social development. Africa’s Blue Economy Strategy, launched under the theme “Developing a sustainable blue economy; increasing momentum for Africa’s Blue Growth”, envisions an inclusive and sustainable blue economy that significantly contributes to the continent’s transformation and growth. The objective of the Africa Blue Economy Strategy is to guide the development of an inclusive and sustainable blue economy that becomes a significant contributor to continental transformation and growth, through advancing knowledge on marine and aquatic biotechnology, environmental sustainability, the growth of Africa-wide shipping industry, the development of sea, river and lake transport, the management of fishing activities on these aquatic spaces, and the exploitation and beneficiation of deep-sea minerals and other resources.

With the financial support from the Government of Sweden for the project “Enhancing Blue Economy in the IGAD Member States for Biodiversity Conservations and Livelihood Diversification”, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) is implementing a 5-year Blue Economy strategy (2021 – 2025) and Implementation Plan (BESIP), aligned with Africa’s Blue Economy Strategy. The vision of IGAD’s Blue Economy strategy is to develop an inclusive and sustainable Blue Economy that significantly contributes to the Horn of Africa’s transformation.