How to Start Fish Importation Business

 How to Start Fish Importation Business in Nigeria: The National Fish Demand in Nigeria.

With a national fish demand of around 2.1 million metric tons per annum.

And a domestic production estimated at around 800,000 metric tons.

Nigeria has a shortage of around 1.3 million metric tons.

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This condition has left Nigeria with the alternative of importing an estimated 1.9 million metric tons of fish valued at over N125 billion per annum.

Policies have been set up by successive administrations to increase national production.

This has been distinctive and industrial capture fisheries and aquaculture production.

Yet, they have fallen shy of tackling this monstrous trend that has continued to fritter away Nigeria’s foreign exchange.

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Fisheries sub-sector investigators maintain that fish farmers and fishermen have not been adequately motivated.

And assisted by the government to go hard and fast to the field.

And put in their best to haul the nation out of dependency on Asian countries.

And others that surge Nigerian market with a wide range of frozen fish.

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 How to Start Fish Importation Business in Nigeria


How to Start Fish Importation Business in Nigeria: Stand in the Gap Today

Bridging the fish demand and supply space in Nigeria requires a ton of commitment from the government and other stakeholders.

It is hereby a clarion call for people to come and invest in the fisheries sub-sector to make it work.

Proper fisheries policies, adequate laws and regulations, among others, have been set up by the government to draw in investors into the sub-sector.

Investors who need to succeed in this business may make use of the information contained in this article as a guide in the correct direction.

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How to Start Fish Importation Business in Nigeria

Importing Food (Fish) Products into Nigeria

Understanding the legal and regulatory requirements that govern product registration is fundamental for businesses looking to import fish products into the Nigerian market.

In Nigeria, the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) is the regulatory body authorized to certify, license, or otherwise endorse food importers, products and labels.

Importers can’t advertise, import, or distribute processed foods (fish) in Nigeria without earlier approval from NAFDAC.

All products regulated by NAFDAC must meet the same requirements, whether imported from abroad or produced domestically.

So what does the process of registering fish and fish products entail?

Which is subject to the Fish Inspection Act and Regulations.

– It also contains requirements for wholesomeness, labeling, packaging, grading, health and safety.

– Importers of fish and fish products must have an Import License issued by NAFDAC.

– They must inform the closest NAFDAC fish inspection office in writing each time they import fish.

– Restrictions apply to the importation of waterly creatures.

Import permits are required for susceptible species of finfish, molluscs, and crustaceans.

These creatures must meet the import requirements to enter Nigeria.

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Fish Health Protection Regulations – Manual of Compliance imported food products entail?

The process of registering imported food products involves four stages:

(1) Documentation→ (2) Import Permit→ (3) Product Vetting→ (4) Laboratory Analysis.

At the Documentation Stage;

a. the company seeking to import a fish and fish product will collate the documents required by NAFDAC.

b. Once NAFDAC is satisfied with the documents presented; the company can apply to the Food Registration Division of NAFDAC for a permit to import samples for registration.

The company can apply to the Food Registration Division of NAFDAC for a permit to import samples for registration.

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How to Start Fish Importation Business in Nigeria

What documents are required for fish importation?

In applying for the registration of an imported food product, NAFDAC requires the following documents:

  1. A Power of Attorney or a Contract Manufacturing Agreement. Either document must be notarized by a Notary Public in the nation of manufacture. If by chance it is a Power of Attorney, it must be signed by the MD or General Manager. Others include Chairman or President of the Company. the names of the products to be registered must be stated.

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NAFDAC requires that the Power of Attorney specifically bestow power to the company.

This company would register the product with NAFDAC.

  1. Certificate of Manufacture and Free Sale which has been authenticated by the Nigerian Embassy in the nation of manufacture. If there is no Nigerian Embassy in the nation of manufacture, the Certificate of Manufacture and Free Sale ought to be authenticated by whatever other embassy or high commission of any commonwealth or West African nation.
  2. Comprehensive Certificate of Product Analysis issued by the manufacturer.
  3. Certificate of Business Incorporation of the candidate with the Corporate Affairs Commission in Nigeria.
  4. A trademark with the Trademarks, Certificate of Registration of Brand Name or Commercial Law Department, Patents and Designs Registry, Trade and Investment. Federal Ministry of Industry,
  5. Expired License (for product renewal).
  6. Application letter for Import Permit by nearby representative.
  7. Properly completed Fish Registration Form.
  8. Notarized declaration.
  9. Two product labels intended for registration.

How to Start Fish Importation Business in Nigeria

Are there a specific rules with regard to labeling?

NAFDAC has very specific compliance requirements with regard to labeling of fish products.

For example, the agency requires that the ingredients must be listed by their normal names.

This has to be in order of their predominance by weight unless the fish is standardized.

In which case the label must include just those ingredients which the standard makes not compulsory.

This article is intended to provide general information about the subject matter.

Professional legal advice ought to be searched for about specific circumstances.

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Nigeria is said to be the highest importer of frozen fish on the planet.

However, Nigeria’s ecological and climatic conditions put the nation at an advantage.

For the production of a wide range of fishes in order to attain food security.

The constraints hampering development of intra-regional trade in fish products must be removed.

It is by this move that we will be ableto realize the enormous potential in the business.

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Specifically, progress must be made in:

  • Respecting hygiene and quality standards for processed products specifically;
  • Improving infrastructure and equipment for the handling, transport, storage and preservation of fresh, frozen or processed fish products;
  • Providing more and better information on trade rules and potential markets; and
  • Creating a more secure business environment conducive to the development of sub-regional trade.

Import fish on a commercial base – Basic Guidelines

About importing fish on a commercial base

To import fish, like marine fish for profit, you should apply for a permit.

You can get this from the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

An import permit is legitimate for six months from the date of issue.

Failure to adhere to permit conditions may result in the suspension or cancelation of the permit.

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How to Start Fish Importation Business in Nigeria

What you ought to do

  1. Obtain the “Application for an import permit form” at the Fisheries Department of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry in Nigeria
  2. Read the application form carefully and make sure that you fulfill the requirements and conditions.
  3. Complete the application forms by providing the following information:
  • The physical addresses of exporters in the nation of origin where you’re exporting the fish from.
  • The normal and botanical names of the fish species.
  • The quantities of fish species you need to import.
  1. Attach the following to the application forms:
  • A certified duplicate of your identity document and/or registration documents of your company, and close enterprise or trust.
  • Certified duplicates of legitimate import permits from the Department of Trade and Industry or International Trade Administration Commission permit notification.
  • The original tax clearance certificate from the Nigerian Revenue Service.

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