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Cost–benefit review

The following Table 1 is a summary of the costs and estimated benefits of tank farming of fish in Nigeria. This is based on costs for a single 16m2 tank with a fish production cycle of six months.

Although the aquaculture industry in Nigeria is still subject to input price fluctuations, the industry continues to expand. With a number of technical assistance projects focused on capacity building, skills continue to be developed to support the industry and strengthen the value chain. The industry was led by the establishment of intensive fish hatcheries and delivery of quality fish feeds through imports or greatly improved local production including extruded, floating fish feeds. Professional associations have also evolved to drive the industry with wider participation in the value chain as with training programmes, certification of technical consultants and quality control of fish seed and feeds. The value chain for input supplies has become very broad in a short time period, with many suppliers of fish seed

and feeds. The wide variety of input suppliers has increased competition and resulted in cost savings that are passed on to farmers and the potential ability for expanding into wider markets. Veterinary services for the identification and treatment of diseases and parasites remain a weak area, but this is slowly being addressed as are issues concerning environmental management. While farms have not so far had issues of environmental impact, most have limited areas (,10ha) and varying levels of release of eutrophic waters. As the sector matures and as input prices rise and

market values settle or fall, the commercial resilience of the industry is to be tested. To date, it has accommodated these challenges through efficiency improvements, and in a competitive environment, more successful producers appear to be emerging and may assume a greater share of national output. The ecosystem resilience of these systems so far shows little constraint, although if the industry expands, suitable locations with adequate environmental capacity may become a constraint. Socially, these systems appear to be providing a valuable source of income diversification, and may in the future become a notable source of youth employment.