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Fish Import to Nigeria Drops From ₦3.4 billion to ₦3.2 billion in 1 year

The value of fish imported into Nigeria from Norway dropped by 5.9% from ₦3.4 billion to ₦3.2 billion over a period of one year due to forex restrictions in the country.

The Director for Africa for the Norwegian Seafood Council, Mr. Tronds Kostveit while speaking at Council’s seminar in Lagos.

Nigeria’s bilateral relationship with Norway has grown considerably especially in the seafood trade as Nigeria is one of the country’s biggest export destinations.

He confirmed Nigeria’s position as the largest importer of Norwegian seafood, adding that the country imported a total of 43,251 metric tons of various fish last year.

However, the foreign exchange (Forex) restrictions placed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on some items, including stock fish have affected the seafood trade relations between the two countries.

Fish importation into the country from Norway dropped by 5.9% from ₦3.4 billion in 2021 to ₦3.2 billion in 2022 following the foreign exchange (Forex) restriction.

Apart from stockfish, it was also noted that Nigeria imported two other fish varieties.

Kostveit revealed that mackerel is the most imported fish product with a total of 14,997 metric tons, this was followed by herring with 13,845 metric tons, while stockfish recorded a total of 10,740 metric tons.

He added that 9,925 metric tons of stockfish heads were imported during the year while 815 tons of stockfish bodies were imported during the same period.

The CBN had, in 2015, listed pelagic fish and stockfish among 44 items not valid for the forex window.

The forex restriction has affected Nigerian importers and stock fish customers as importing the commodity from Norway has become almost impossible. The price of the commodity in Nigeria has also increased significantly due to the aforementioned reasons.

The Norwegian Minister for Fisheries and Ocean Policy, Rt Hon. Bjornar Skjaeran had earlier requested the CBN to remove the commodity from the list of restricted items for imports.

Skjaeran argued that stockfish poses no direct competition with other fishes produced in Nigeria as it is a unique product that can only be produced in the special climate of Northern Norway.

Dare Akogun

Dare Akogun is a dynamic media innovator, strategic communication professional, and seasoned climate and environmental sustainability journalist with over 10 years of influential contributions to the media industry.

He Currently serving as the Head of Digital Media, Senior News Editor, and a presenter at Sobi FM 101.9, a leading radio station in Ilorin, Nigeria.

Dare is on a mission to leverage his media innovation expertise and project management skills to produce high-quality, accurate, and engaging content, while advocating for reduced fossil fuel consumption, especially coal, to combat effect of global warming.

He has covered comprehensively environmental issues and COP conferences, including COP28 in Dubai last year , COP 27 in Egypt, and the United Nations Least Developed Countries conference in Doha, in 2023.

He is a recipient of fellowship to be part of a 15 team of journalists selected worldwide to cover the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue 2024.

He has a Master's Degree in Mass Communication, from the University of Lagos, a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism from the Lagos State University and also a
Certification in Business Administration and Management, from the Babson College, Massachusetts, United States of America.

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