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Business Potentials in the Sea of Ceará

| SOCIOECONOMIC IMPACTS | Study carried out by the Portuguese consultancy PwC Portugal shows the advantages and challenges of the coast of Ceará


"The sea is nursery, it is where the sustenance is taken". The shellfish colector Marli Soares' phrase, 49, expresses the perception of those who have in the waters the opportunity to undertake and saw the husband and three children make the fishery the craft, in Barrinha, Icapuí. Besides the community, distant 205 km from Fortaleza, the economic force of the coast of Ceará reaches the 573 km of coast. Enter at the bulge, of the so-called economy of the sea, tourism, energy, nautical sports, fish industry and boats.

In some aspects, the state needs to explore further its potentials. This is what a study carried out by the Portuguese consultancy PwC Portugal shows. Among the positive points cited is the 164% increase in port activity between 2008 and 2017. There was also an increase in the number of vessels (51.13%) and containers (48.50%). In this context, the Port of Pecém is a boost factor.

"Ceará, like all of Brazil, is finding growth paths and found it in the ocean too," says Miguel Marques, a partner at Pwc. He highlights the importance of studying the sea to know how to exploit biodiversity and economic activities in a sustainable manner. "You have great attraction, which is the beautiful coast that is there," he adds.

That was the path chosen by Marli. She says she did the predatory extraction of the algae in Icapuí. They were about 200 kg per month, sold at R $ 0.80 per kilo.

The practice was common in the region and ended up in negative environmental impact on the bank of the aquatic plant. "We sold without knowing what it was for." Currently, it is part of the Women of Body and Seaweed project of the Brasil Cidadão Foundation, which trained the women of the municipality for the cultivation and production of cosmetics and food.

The algae, which were previously sold at $ 0.80, are now part of a composition of soaps that are sold from $ 5 to $ 15, to tourists and hostels on the beach, besides shampoos. The product also becomes food in the school lunch of the city. Professor Luís Ernesto Arruda Bezerra, from the Institute of Marine Sciences of the Federal University of Ceará (UFC), explains that the possibilities are many.

Besides the cosmetic industry, algae are used in ice cream, tooth paste etc. "It has possibilities for several segments. We have important species and perfect climatic conditions," he says.

Meanwhile, the annual production of aquaculture (shrimp and other), which has a strong presence in Ceará, fell by 25.90% from 2008 to 2017. For Guilherme Muchale, manager of the Industry Observatory of the Federation of Industries of Ceará (Fiec) , the drought reflects on the numbers.

He also explains the importance of reducing the taxes of the Port of Pecém, located between São Gonçalo do Amarante and Caucaia. "It happens that neighboring states, such as in Natal, Rio Grande do Norte, end up having more competitive prices," he points out.

Rômulo Alexandre Soares, president of Fiec's International Relations Council, stresses that these borders open the door to foreign trade. "This is Pecém's bet. The state has the potential to be not only regional, but a global center," he says.


The Leme - PwC Barometer of the Sea Economy (Ceará) study is made up of indices of several variables relevant to subsectors, which belong to the economy of the sea..



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