The Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr Godwin Emefiele said about $1.2 billion worth of fish is imported into this country annually.
Emefiele disclosed this in a meeting while briefing some state Governors and the media on the feat recorded so far in agriculture for economic growth, in Abuja on Thursday.
He explained that current fish production stood at 0.8 million tons while the demand was 2.7 million tons, giving a deficit of 1.9 million tons.
He said the apex bank’s current initiative was to engage the coastal state governors to develop the blue economy to address the deficit of 1.9metric tons as well as eradicate the huge import bill for fish.
According to him, this is a very huge economic opportunity for the states to create an enabling environment for investors.
In a similar development, the governor said that major innovation to deepen the poultry business was the recent partnership between the bank and tertiary institutions to pilot the “The University – Based Poultry Production Programme” in twelve 12 Universities across the six geo-political zones.
He added that with objective is not only to build future agripreneurs, but also making the universities able to improve their internally generated revenue.
“For the pilot phase, five Nigerian Universities, namely; Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, Federal University of Agriculture Abeokuta (FUNAAB), Rivers State University, Port Harcourt, University of Nigeria , Nsukka and University of Ilorin were enrolled.
“These Universities have submitted revised proposal to their respective sponsoring banks,” he said.
Governors of Ekiti, Adamawa, Lagos, Ogun, Benue, Zamfara, Kebbi, Jigawa, Sokoto, Bauchi, Gombe, Katsina, Anambra, Imo, Edo, and Borno states attended the meeting