A Research Associate Professor/Director Aqua Centre at the Asian Institute of Technology (AIIT), Bangkok, Thailand, Dr. Ram Bhujel, has stated that fishery resources in Nigeria are underestimated considering the enormous investment opportunities in the sector.
He pointed out that in other parts of the world, the sector contributes significantly to their revenue.
According to him, investments in aquaculture around the world, due to the rising demand for seafood globally.
Bhujel, disclosed this at the Goldfisher Tilapia conference 2019 in Lagos, organised by Goldfisher Innovations and Logistics Limited, in partnership with Panyam Fish Farm. The theme of the conference was “Bringing Tilapia Boom to the Shores of Nigeria.”
He said with new technology on Tilapia fish farming, Nigeria would diversify its cultured fish species away from the catfish monopoly. This, is expected to increase the Tilapia value chain.
Bhujel, urged Nigeria to strategically position itself to benefit from the huge economic potential, saying there was no hard or fast rule to it.
“What is needed is a change in policy that would open doors for aquaculture development in the country, with a lot abundant water bodies and human resources in the country which can be utilized to empower a lot of families,” he said.
Speaking on the emerging trend on Tilapia, in a presentation titled, “Tilapia Farming Worldwide and Scope for Nigeria,” he said government and the private sector needed to do more to encourage local farmers to copy what other countries were doing to scale up capabilities of its citizens.
“Policy makers, research institution, private sector needs to come together to make this work in the country as the fish consumption in Nigeria is at 13.3 per cent, while Nigeria’s self-sufficiency on seafood is declining,” he stated.
On his part, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer,(MD/CEO) Goldfisher Innovation and Logistics, Akpos Yemi, said having toured around three locations, namely- Warri, Abuja and Lagos, his organisation was able to change a lot of misconception about Tilapia farming.
“With this event hosting about 500 participants free of charge, we are ready to train anybody ready to go into the business in collaboration with AIIT, to do tilapia business.
“To make this work we have imported over 4500 brood stock and replicated a standard hatchery as obtainable in AIIT in the Panyam fish farm in Jos, Plateau State,” he said.