Nigeria spends about $500 million annually on fish importation, the Federal Director of Agriculture in Abia State, Ebere Oziri, has said.
This amount, he said, should have been channelled into other areas of the economy, such as the fish industry.
Speaking in Umuahia, the state capital, during the inauguration of the leadership of Catfish Framers Association of Nigeria (CAFAN), Oziri said there was need to boost fish production.
He said the government was ready to support local fish production, but that the operators need to belong to registered associations to attract help from the government.
Oziri said when farmers come together, the cost of feeds will be reduced as the government will be ready and willing to sell at a subsidised rate, pointing out that the Federal Government is desirous to reduce the importation of fish.
He called on fish farmers to register with the association, stressing that only registered ones will benefit from the subsidised fish feeds. “We are determined to make fish available for all which do not have any health hazard.”