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Agric Minister Unveils Initiative To Promote Trade In Aquatic Animals



The initiative is aimed at addressing the challenges bedeviling the aquaculture sub-sector of the country while enhancing the effective delivery of robust Aquatic Animal Health Services.

Also, the plan would promote international trade of aquatic animal species such as fish, shrimps, and water snails and improve production, processing, and marketing in the sector.

This is the first policy to be made under the Kyari administration as Agric Minister.

This was announced by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security (FMAFS), Dr. Ernest Afolabi Umakhihe, in a statement signed by the Assistant Director, Information, Ezeaja Ikemefuna on Sunday

The Permanent Secretary was represented by the Director of the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture, Dr. Ime Umoh.

Umahkhihe said “The development of a comprehensive aquatic animal health strategic plan would address some of these challenges in the aquaculture sector and provide a roadmap for improved and safe fishery production as well as productivity in Nigeria.

“And NAAHS will minimize the negative impacts of aquatic pathogens, protect the health of the human population and boost the resilience of both marine and terrestrial ecosystems in the country.

“The launch marks a significant milestone in the nation’s commitment to the well-being of our aquatic ecosystems, the prosperity of our aquatic industry, and exploration of the great potentials of the industry towards food and nutritional security.”

The Permanent Secretary urged the relevant stakeholders to embrace the strategy, support and actively participate in its implementation, to harness the potential of aquatic resources for the common good of all Nigerians.

Also, the Chief Veterinary Officer of Nigeria/Director, Federal Department of Veterinary and Pest Control Services, Dr Columba Vakuru said that the strategy would fast-track research and innovation in aquatic animal health.

Vakuru revealed that diseases affecting aquatic animals could have severe consequences on food consumed and a threat to nutritional security, economy, public health, and the delicate balance of our aquatic ecosystems.

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