Date of Award

1986

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Marine Affairs

Abstract

The major problem facing the Nigerian fishing industry is in its inability to satisfy the demand for tasty yet inexpensive animal protein. Nigeria's marine biological resources are limited and the Gulf of Guinea is among the poorest in the whole of West Africa. Nigeria's population is estimated to have reached about 100 million and is growing at 3.09 per cent per annum. Nigeria's fishing industry is multi-sectoral and composed of the riverine, lake, coastal, estuarine, and culture fisheries. Together they constituted about 1.5 per cent of the GDP in 1976. Up to the present moment, the National has relied on the large scale importation of fishery products chiefly from East European countries. This level of importation is not possible in the current atmosphere. As a result of the current oil crisis, Nigeria stands to lose about $6 billion or about 50 per cent of projected revenues in 1986 alone. Significant increases in domestic fishery production are unlikely in all but culture fishery. This is currently hampered by amongst a host of factors. Lack of familiarity with the benefits and techniques of aquaculture. There are also severe shortages of several important inputs. The various expensive Government efforts to increase domestic fish production have been largely met by failure. In light of this, the encouragement of private sector participation should become a stated goal of the Government. The thesis identifies tow major areas that could contribute to the alleviation of the afore-stated problems. These are: 1. increased regional cooperation under the aegis of Economic community of West African States (ECOWAS) and 2. added emphasis on projects that promote self sufficiency. The study identifies two such projects: the Integrated Fishery Operation (IFO) and the Fresh Fish Marketing Operation (FFMO). They are described in some detail. The projects feature improved handling and marketing techniques. These features are expected to minimize waste-a problem identified as a major one afflicting the several fisheries in Nigeria.