The Chamber of Aquaculture Ghana is appealing for tax waivers from the government to enable the industry compete with other African countries participating in the Africa Continental Free Trade Area.

According to Research Director of the Chamber, Dr. Lawerh Tetteh, fish feed contributes about 70% of their production cost which is affecting their business, hence, the need for government support.

“We are now going to compete with other fish producing countries in Africa. As you know – Ghana – we don’t have waivers on the materials that we use to produce fish feed. And in Ghana, fish feed alone contributes close to 70% of the production cost so if we can get state agencies or the government to give ours some tax exemptions or waivers, this will go a long way to help the sector to be prepared and ready to compete with other countries outside Ghana,” he noted.

Also, Dr. Lawerh Tetteh mentioned that, “now that the Continental Free Trade Area is in full force, the fish sector, especially, tilapia, catfish production has been liberalized, so companies in other parts of Africa like Egypt, South Africa or Zambia that have better economies of scale can just bring their produce in Ghana and we will not be able to compete,” he added.

Earlier this week, the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Mavis Hawa Koomson, called on players in the artisanal fishing sector to forge strong working relationships among themselves to overcome the challenges they face and contribute to improve conditions in the fishing industry.

According to her, it is imperative for all players in the fishery sector to work closely with the ministry to fashion out ways to protect and maintain livelihoods in the sector for both current and future generations.