KAUST collaborates with Islamic Development Bank for aquaculture capacity in member countries

Representatives from KAUST, Islamic Development Bank and Innovative Contractors for Advanced Dimensions.

Representatives from member countries of the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) visited King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) to gain insights into the University's aquaculture expertise.

The IsDB funded the three-day familiarization visit, in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture (MEWA) and Innovative Contractors for Advanced Dimensions (ICAD), to introduce KAUST aquaculture technology to eight government representatives from Morocco, Mali, Burkina Faso and Egypt. The visit began on November 2023, and involved tours of aquaculture facilities in the Kingdom, providing opportunities for knowledge exchange and cooperation.

The visit aimed to accelerate aquaculture capabilities in countries across North and West Africa, and introduced KAUST as a trusted partner in the development of aquaculture infrastructure in the representatives’ respective countries. The visit received financial support through IsDB’s Technology Deployment Cooperation Program (TDCP) and ICAD, which has pledged to co-invest 20% of the project value, up to USD 20 million, as grants for future projects using KAUST aquaculture technology.

Prior to the visit, the IsDB-KAUST team, which was comprised of Hadi Zulfiqar and Riddhi Shukla, technology deployment specialist and head of technology deployment, respectively, from the KAUST Technology Transfer Office; Syed Hassan Alsagoff and Isatou Cham, manager and lead specialist, respectively, from the Science Technology and Innovation Division of the Cooperation and Capacity Development Department at IsDB; and Asaad Mohamed, aquaculture program director at KAUST Beacon Development; held several online meetings with IsDB regional hubs and relevant institutions in member countries to present the university’s aquaculture capabilities alongside MEWA.

According to Riad Ragueb Ahmed, director of Cooperation and Capacity Development for IsDB, “The TDCP [IsDB Technology Deployment Cooperation Program] aims to accelerate the deployment of proven and cost-effective technologies for member countries. The partnership with KAUST under TDCP will enable countries to access ground-breaking solutions in a number of areas including aquaculture.”

Mohamed Amine Mansouri of the Agence Nationale pour le Développement de l'Aquaculture (ANDA), Morocco, said: “Morocco looks forward to being part of the IsDB Technology Deployment Cooperation Program through the ‘Making Aquaculture Work for Market and Social Inclusiveness’ Project. The demonstration visit to KAUST will enable us to harness innovative technologies to develop greater value from aquaculture.”