The Fisheries Society of Nigeria (FISON) has called for total abolition of custom duties on imported fish feeds and fish farm facilities.
The President of FISON, Mrs Foluke Areola, made the call on Tuesday in Lagos in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
Areola said the cost of imported floating feeds and fish farm equipment were still high, adding that the local feeds which did not also come cheap were sometimes contaminated and sub_standard.
According to Areola, all these challenges combine to make production cost very high.
â€œBy the time people pay import duties and so on, the cost becomes very high and feed is about 80 per cent on the average the total input to produce fish.
â€œIf that is already high, practically, the final cost of selling the fish will go up,â€ Areola said.
She said that appropriate pricing and reduction of operating cost were keys to sustainability of fish farming business in Nigeria.
â€œA lot of farmers had the problem of feeding their stock which forced them to fold up in 2009 because of the high cost of fish feeds and a lack of good farming equipment,â€ she said.
Areola urged more people to invest in the production of fish feeds locally to mitigate the current problems being faced by fish farmers.
She said the society would encourage investors to use locally available materials to reduce the production cost and cost of feeds.