Marjaana Sall, the Ambassador of the European Union to the Republic of Seychelles said:
- " The La Digue fish market reflects the success of the EU-Seychelles bilateral cooperation on fisheries because it will generate revenues, improve hygiene and food safety and create better conditions for the customers, and the fishermen themselves. Today's opening ceremony shows that the EU-Seychelles Protocol on Sustainable Fisheries benefits directly the local economy and the population of La Digue."
- "The Fisheries Protocol together with the Economic Partnership Agreement with the EU generates important economic benefits for Seychelles. All in one, these two complementary agreements have made Seychelles the second exporter of canned tuna to the EU market. This is a remarkable achievement that contributes to the economic growth and prosperity of Seychelles. "
The construction of the fish market is one of the activities funded in the framework of the current Fisheries Protocol, signed between the Government of Seychelles and the EU for the period 2014- 2019. Under the Protocol, the EU provides a total financial contribution of 30 million euros (480 million Seychelles Rupees) including access fees for EU fishing vessels operating in the Seychelles waters and support to the Seychelles sectoral fisheries policy (Sectoral Support).
The La Digue fish market has been developed as part of the sectoral support which aims at developing Seychelles fisheries on the basis of priorities identified by the Seychelles Fishing Authority (SFA). The objective is to promote artisanal fisheries infrastructure and development, ultimately supporting the sustainability of all the Seychelles' fisheries, including the regional tuna fisheries. The new La Digue fish market will be managed by the local Fishermen community.
The EU-Seychelles Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Agreement is a longstanding cooperation agreement between Seychelles and the EU, enabling EU vessels to fish in the waters under the jurisdiction of Seychelles. The EU fishing vessels’ uptakes do not exceed the surplus of the tropical tuna stocks that are not caught by the artisanal, semi-artisanal and industrial Seychellois vessels in the Exclusive economic zone of Seychelles. Vessels authorised to fish under the current Protocol unload their catches in Port Victoria and supply tuna, which is processed not only in the Seychelles but in also Mauritius and in Madagascar.
The Fisheries Protocol generates important economic benefits when it is combined with the preferential trade regime granted to Seychelles for frozen and canned tuna products in the framework of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) signed between the Eastern and Southern Africa region and the European Union. The Seychelles' processing industry supplied by the EU fishing fleets employs 2,300 workers. Seychelles is the second exporter to the EU market of canned tuna in volume for 2017.