Thursday 23 May 2024

Marine and Blue Economy Ministry Engages Fish Importers, exporters

THE Indigenous Fish Importers and Exporters Association has told the Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Gboyega Oyetola that multiple laboratory sampling embarked upon by both the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has been a clog in the wheel for fish importation and exportation business.

Speaking during a two-day stakeholders’ engagement session organised by the Ministry of Marine and Blue Economy in Lagos, recently, the fish importers and exporters lamented that the time and number of samples taken alongside levies and taxes paid pose challenge to the sub-sector.

According to the acting National Secretary of the group, Chidike Ukoh, “Accelerated laboratory sampling, delay in the issuance of license certificates, amongst others are major challenges facing the fishing sub-sector of the economy.”

Chidike also drew the attention of the minister on the need for the establishment of a security outfit with the mandate of securing the lives and properties of fishermen, similar to what obtains in the agricultural sector with agro-rangers and mining marshals, husbanding and protecting miners.

Also speaking, the National Vice President, Tilapia Aquaculture Developers Association of Nigeria (TADAN), Nurudeen Tiamiyu, stated that so much perspective is been focused on cat and tilapia fish farming while other derivatives from the Blue Economy such as finfish, seaweed, urchins, session cucumbers and crustaceans farming are being shelved either consciously or unconsciously.

Responding, Oyetola assured that the Federal Government will find a solution to the challenges, adding that fish exportation is another source of foreign exchange for the country and allowing it linger will ultimately affect government’s revenue outlook.

He further assured stakeholders in the importation and exportation of fish that other challenges, such as accelerated laboratory sampling, delay in the issuance of licence certificates, amongst others, will be taken upon by the Director of Fishery and Aquaculture in the ministry.


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