Foreign Council Trains Fishery Officers, Processors in Nigeria
The Norwegian Seafood Council ,on Tuesday, commenced a training workshop for Nigeria’s fishery officers and stakeholders in aquaculture, processing and export to boost bilateral trade relations between the two countries.
It was gathered that the ongoing four-day training workshop is being held at the Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos and had in attendance top officials from the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD), fish farmers, exporters and other stakeholders.
In his welcome address, the Norwegian Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Knut Leon, noted the significance of stockfish as an extremely important part of the country’s bilateral relations, trade and history adding that for Nigeria, it was an important part of its food culture and trade.
He said, “Today, we will move a step forward to bring capacity building and training to the Nigerian fish industry. We have brought a fantastic team from Norway to train fish farmers and stakeholders in the sector. We are confident that you will find their inputs valuable.”
“Stockfish trade has created jobs in Nigeria. It is a win-win situation and we will continue to fight to remove the barriers on the path of this important trade.This cannot be a one-way thing, as we appeal to the Federal Government and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to do their part in the equation.There must be cooperation between the two nations to benefit all sides,” Leon added.
Speaking, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD), Dr Mahmood Abubakar, commended the Norwegian Seafood Council for the initiative saying the training would help to harness the huge potential in fishery and aquaculture.
Represented by the Director of Fisheries and Aquaculture, Mr Imeh Umeh, the agriculture minister, stressed that the effort in harnessing Nigeria’s huge potential in aquaculture would give an added impetus to the realisation of its shared objective of wealth creation.
He said, “I wish to commend the organisers for this workshop which is apt and very timely. The huge gap between potential, productivity and the underutilisation of resources and opportunities in Nigeria needs to be addressed urgently.”
“The Federal Government will continue to partner with the Norwegian Seafood Council for the development and growth of fisheries and aquaculture in Nigeria. I have no doubt in my mind that this training will help to develop our fisheries in best management practices accepted internationally,” Abubakar added.
Also, the Director-General, Africa – Norwegian Seafood Council, Mr Trond Kostweit, said to grow any fish industry, productivity must increase, “We have a lot of experience and technology to share at the training this week and we are sure it will benefit Nigeria as a country and the fish farming industry.”