Noro, Solomon Islands, August 14, 2017—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, and the Global Agriculture and Food Security
Program Private Sector Window, is lending $10 million to National Fisheries
Developments, Ltd. (NFD), to support sustainable tuna production and employment
in Solomon Islands.
This loan is IFC’s second investment to
support the tuna industry in Solomon Islands. In 2013, IFC provided a $9-million
loan to SolTuna Limited, a tuna processor and NFD sister company. The new
financing will help fund the purchase of a new fishing vessel and ensure
maintenance of the existing fishing fleet. IFC will also provide advisory
services to promote best practices in environmental and social risk management.
“Expansion of NFD’s fleet will increase
our capacity substantially and enable us to create more local jobs, directly
in fishing, shore handling, provision of supplies and services, and indirectly
in tuna processing,” said Frank Wickham, General Manager of NFD.
The tuna industry accounts for 18% of the
country’s GDP. In recent years, NFD’s tuna catch has accounted for around
25 percent of the commercially caught tuna in Solomon Islands.
“IFC's engagements with NFD and SolTuna
will boost their combined capacity to catch and process fish — an important
source of revenue in the region — and also build on sustainable management
practices and set a higher standard for the wild-catch fishing industry,”
said IFC Director for East Asia and the Pacific, Vivek Pathak.
Solomon Islands benefits from a sustainable
and well-managed fishery. In 2016, it received the Marine Stewardship Council
(MSC) certification for skipjack and yellowfin tuna purse
seine and pole-and-line fishery. MSC recognizes
that these species are caught from well-managed stocks and that the fishing
practices meet its robust sustainability standards. The World Bank is supporting
the government’s fisheries management capacity through its Pacific Islands
Regional Oceanscape Program.
Solomon Islands is classified as a fragile
and conflict-affected situation (FCS) and is eligible for International
Development Association (IDA) support. With 30 percent unemployment, the
nation depends on its vibrant fisheries sector as a sustainable source
of economic growth.
Supporting a more productive and resilient
fisheries sector can sustain livelihoods, improve nutrition, and increase
government tax revenues, thereby contributing to the security and equity
of the country.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is
the largest global development institution focused on the private sector
in emerging markets. Working with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide,
we use our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities
in the toughest areas of the world. In FY16, we delivered a record $19
billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the
power of the private sector to help end poverty and boost shared prosperity.
For more information, visit www.ifc.org
Established over 30 years ago, NFD is Solomon
Islands’ premier fishing company, operating a fleet of purse seine and
pole and line vessels from the port of Noro in Western Province. The company’s
management, staff and crew are nearly all Solomon Islanders. NFD and SolTuna
form one of the most integrated tuna fishing and processing operations
in the South Pacific.
The Global Agriculture and Food Security
Program (GAFSP) is a global effort that pools donor resources to fund programs
focused on increasing agricultural productivity as a way to reduce poverty
and increase food and nutrition security. GAFSP targets countries with
the highest rates of poverty and hunger. The Public Sector Window helps
governments with national agriculture and food security plans. The private
sector window, managed by IFC, and supported by the governments of Australia,
Canada, Japan, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States,
provides long- and short-term loans, credit guarantees, and equity to private
sector companies to improve productivity growth, deepen farmer’s links
to markets, and increase capacity and technical skills.