FISH FARMING A SOLUTION TO UNEMPLOYMENT
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Unemployment is defined according to Oxford Advance Dictionary as the fact of a number of people without a job.
Harold Goldstein (2008) defined unemployment as the enforced idleness of wage earners who are able and willing to work but cannot find jobs. In societies in which most people can earn a living only by working for others, being unable to find a job is a serious problem. Because of its human costs in deprivation and a feeling of rejection and personal failure, the extent of unemployment is widely used as a measure of workers' welfare. The proportion of workers unemployed also shows how well a nation's human resources are used and serves as an index of economic activity.
Unemployment is a global phenomenon in this 21st century. For example, the rate of unemployment in Belgium stood at 8.7% (statistics institute of Belgium, 2010). The United Arab Emirates rise to 12.7% (Emirate business April 2008). United State of America is 9.8% (office of national statistic US November 2010).
The rates of unemployment in Africa are listed below: -
Ø South Africa 25.3% (statistic South Africa, 2010)
Ø Nigeria 19.7% (National Bureau for statistic Federal Republic of Nigeria 2009, September)
Source: CBN (1998) Nigeria Major economic and financial report.
Economists have described the causes of unemployment as frictional, seasonal, structural, and cyclical.
Frictional unemployment arises because workers seeking jobs do not find them immediately; while looking for work they are counted as unemployed. Friction in this case refers to the incongruity between the demand for and supply of labor.
Seasonal unemployment occurs when industries have a slow season, such as construction and other outdoor work in winter. It also occurs at the end of the school year in June, when large numbers of students and graduates looking for work. At its seasonal high point (January and February), Structural unemployment arises from an imbalance between the kinds of workers wanted by employers and the kinds of workers looking for jobs. The imbalances may be caused by inadequacy in skills, location, or personal characteristics. Technological developments, for example, necessitate new skills in many industries, leaving those workers who have outdated skills without a job.
Cyclical unemployment results from a general lack of demand for labor. When the business cycle turns downward, demand for goods and services drops; consequently, workers are laid off. In the 19th century, the U.S. experienced depressions roughly every 20 years.
However, several efforts have been made to tackle unemployment globally through funds from the international economic organizations (like World Bank, International monetary fund, European Economic Community), Government, corporate organizations, non Governmental parastatal, and individual. Attentions are driven toward creating a job rather than seeking a job.
Ogunleye G.A.(2004) says in the face of severe unemployment experienced by a country like Nigeria, the small and medium scale is usually the way out. The experience of some developed countries like the United States of America and China that SME has contributed to the growth and development of these economies, especially in terms of employment, contribution to GDP, export, etc. it is as a result of these that the U.S.A currently has a small business sector that has about 22 million small sectors generating more than a half of the country’s GDP, employing about 53% of the total private workforce, and is responsible for the creation of all new jobs. Also in China, the number of township enterprises (as SMEs are called ) increase from 1.52 million in 1978 to 19 million in 1991. During this period, their employees increased from 28 million to 96 million. The same is true of the rural Middle East and Asia.
In a developing country like Nigeria, SMEs have been recognized as the foundation for achieving rapid economic growth and development by way of their output as well as employment potentials. However, despite the numerous advantages of SMEs, the contribution of this sector to the overall economic development of the nation has over the years remained low. Because of these problems and in recognition of SME's advantage federal government of Nigeria has over the years continued to play pioneering and active roles since the 1970s in stimulating SMEs. Notable among the past present and measures for combating unemployment include:
1. provision of strong institutional support which can be seen in the following:
· The establishment of the small scale industries credit schemes (SSIC) in 1971. the scheme was operated as a matching grant between state and federal government to make credit available for small and medium enterprises.
· The establishment of industrial development centers (IDC) 1970-1975.under the plan, #800,000 was allocated for setting up IDCs in various parts of the country. The aim of the government was to provide extension services to the SME as they relate to product development, entrepreneurial training, and technical appraisal of loan applications as well as managerial assistance.
· Establishment of National Directorate of Employment (NDE) 1986. Through the Directorate, a number of programs such as small scale industries, Youth Employment, and vocational skills development, etc, were embarked upon to boost employment.
· Working for Yourself Programme (WFYP) with the assistance of the British Council and the international labor organization (ILO), the federal ministry of industries established this program to provide technical skills to business entrepreneurs.
2. Establishment of industrial banks and ensuring easy access to credit facilities at reasonable rates. The government realizes funds the established bank through the central bank of Nigeria. The established banks are:
o The Nigerian industrial development bank (1964). the bank can grant loans from # 50000- #15 million but not more than 75% of the fixed asset of the business being finance.
o The Nigeria bank for commerce and industry (1973) to the furtherance of its objective to ensure the availability of finance to indigenous entrepreneurs.
o National economic reconstruction fund (NERFUND) Set up in 1989 to provide medium to long-term loans for SMEs.
The government, Non-Governmental Organizations, and individual citizens of Nigeria effort have gone a long way in generating employment across the sectors of the economy.
Despite the effort made so far to combat unemployment, 29,550,000 youth are still unemployed (national bureau for statistics federal republic of Nigeria 2009) which means by implication the number will increase by some Nigeria Youth Corp who will step into the labor market this year. To remedy this government can work on the sector that has the potential of generating employment i.e. agricultural sector particularly fish farming.
In 2004 the total world production of fish farming was 140,500,000 tonnes and the growth rate has been sustained and rapid, in 2007, its market reached $ 86 billion (Source:World Fisheries and Aquaculture), which tells us that fish farming has the potentiality of creating employment globally.
Fish farming is an important economic activity in China. Between 1980 and 1997, the Chinese harvests grew at an annual rate of 16.7 percent, jumping from 1,900,000 tones to 23,000,000 tones (Source: Chinese Bureau of fisheries report, 2005) which accounts for 70% of world production of fish.
Nigeria as a nation has a population of 150 million people (Source: population Census 2006) with the unending demand for fish by her populate can adopt the measure that China used in combating unemployment. Therefore, fish farming is one of the lucrative businesses one can learn and earn a very good profit.
WHAT THEN IS FISH FARMING
According to Grace .O., Evbuomwan (2004) defined fish farming as the art of growing and breeding fish in enclosures such as ponds, multipurpose water reservoirs, irrigation, and drainage channels, fish pens constructed at the edges of rivers or lakes, water-filled burrow pits as well as fish cages floated on rivers or lakes.
Fish farming has the following braches which one can specialize and expand as time goes by: -
Construction of fish ponds Production and selling of fingerlings Buying and Nurturing of fingerlings to juveniles and post juveniles stage then crop. Buying and selling of feeds Fish farming consultant.
Fish farming in Nigeria contributes to the Nigeria GDP of #216.417 billion (source Chairman Fishery society of Nigeria) and small and medium-scale fish farming contributes #14 billion to the economy. This is indeed an eye-opener to a lucrative business one can start and make cool money.
1.2. STATEMENT OF RESEARCH PROBLEM
Unemployment is a social evil that must be kept at an acceptable level because it brings about an increase in crime rate and other social vices among the youth, ranging from prostitution, political violence, internet scam, kidnapping, militancy in the Niger delta, drug trafficking armed robbery and girl trafficking to Italy. It also brings about loss of dignity, human suffering, poverty, family disintegration, etc.
The need to create employment has made the government be taking several measures to tackle the problem through conversing for entrepreneurial behavior among the youth accompany with initiating several developmental and empowerment programs through the national directorate for employment, releasing fund from the central bank of Nigeria through the bank of the industry to microfinance bank.
Fish farming can be considered as an option in the face of unemployment as Nigeria is yet to meet the increase in demand for fish as an alternative source of protein that is not carcinogenic. Fish farming is an economic activity that could lead to improved income and quality of life and it has a high rating because the net return on investment is relatively higher than that of other animal species and its contributory role to the national economy cannot be over-emphasized.
1.3. RESEARCH QUESTION
For an effective research study, the researcher shall find the answer to the following question:
How lucrative is fish farming? What is the minimum capital requirement to set up the business? What are the danger and risks to watch out for? What is the technical knowledge one must possess before venturing into the business? What is the anticipated payback period of investment? How can one source funds to finance the business? What are the branches and methods of fish farming? What is the marketing potential of the fish farming business?
The study will help to critically appraise fish farming as an option to reduce unemployment among Nigeria youth.
1.4. OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The searchlight of this research is primarily focused on fish farming as a tool to combat unemployment. This study will be an eye-opener for youth to look inward and see many lucrative business opportunities he/she can embark upon. In the light of this, the following objectives world be addressed and these include: -
a. Revealing ways of gaining financial support for business.
b. Offer possible solutions to the danger and risk involved in fish farming.
c. Comparing other businesses with the fish farming business so as to ascertain the better option of your choice.
d. Exploring the marketing potential of fish farming.
e. Awareness of Ethics, Government rules, and Regulations girding the business.
f. Extensive study on, “how can I get the business started”.
g. Step by step’s approach of becoming a large scale fish farmer and earn maximum profit.
1.5. JUSTIFICATION OF THE STUDY
The study will be of great importance to: -
Individual who is at the valley of the decision concerning what kind of business to start and how lucrative can it’s been. The corporate organization seeking to diversify its business can as well discover through this research the potentiality of the fish farming business in the market and its profit maximization. The Government, after being aware of the research by the World Bank that majority of Nigerians falls below the poverty line of $1 per day (World Bank 2002). In looking for how to create employment, fish farming should be considered with the potentiality of creating 23,000 jobs (source chairman fishery society of Nigeria i.e. FISON). The insecurity in the country which is militant in Niger delta, kidnapping, robbery, and prostitution is as a result of poverty and unemployment so this study will go a long way to appeal to the hungry man who is angry and at the same time bring morality to the country. Several undergraduates are yet to know that the labor market is oversaturated and seeking white-collar jobs can be a mirage. Therefore, the study is just establishing to undergraduate to look beyond getting a certificate. One of the richest men in the whole world (Bill Gate) is not a civil servant but an entrepreneur therefore the topic is to justify the fact that one can only serve the purpose of God and of a man having a personal business.
1.6. SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The scope of the study is wide. This is because unemployment is a global issue and there are May businesses that are options to checkmate unemployment among youth. However, this study will be confined to fish farming as an option to checkmate unemployment.
Objectively, accessing this study properly will make the researcher narrow the research to Kwara State Ministry of Agriculture and Fish Farming business in Ilorin Metropolis, but will generalize the result with what can be obtainable to Nigeria as a whole.
1.7 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The time and financial constrain are the major limiting factor of this study. Also, on the part of the respondent, some information was considered confidential. Some of the fish farmers don’t keep a record of their products in a year because of their educational level.
Lastly at the ministry, the statistical data of the fish farmer in Kwara state was not accessible at the time of this study because it was lent out to another student of another institution and they could not return it.
As a result of this, proper management of time and money will be made so as to make an effective research.