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Japan Leads in Fish Market

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West Africa Fisheries
  • Japan Leads in Fish Market

Japanese fish exporters have taken over the nation’s market, hitherto dominated by Norwegian mackerel.

Investigation revealed that there is a lull in the sale of Norwegian mackerel in the market based on its high price.

Findings revealed that Norway mackerel exports to Nigeria have declined by 50 per cent because of its high price and the stiff competition introduced by the Japanese traders.

For instance, it was gathered that the Norwegian fish exporters sell for $1,500 per ton while the Japanese sold for $500 per ton.

According to the Federal Department of Fisheries, importation of fish, especially the mackerels, sardinella, hake, croakers and herrings have remained an increasing phenomenon.

It said the import was conservatively estimated at 0.7 million tons.

The exporters lamented that prices of Pacific mackerel from Japan had forced prices down by a boom in imports to Nigeria, Ghana and Egypt.

According to the Chief Operating Officer of Nowaco, Katja Nowak Nielsen, demand has shifted to Pacific mackerel imported from Japan since June, this year.

She added that Norwegian exporters were looking for markets in South Korea and smaller Southeast Asian countries,where their catches can be sold.

She said: “The situation in Nigeria is problematic; because of currency rates, Atlantic mackerel is not really affordable to the average person. For now, there is a lull in sales for Norwegian mackerel. When Norwegian firms were selling to Nigeria, Ghana and Egypt earlier in 2017, prices were roughly between $1,300 and $1,500 per tons.

“The Pacific mackerel are selling at some $500 per ton cheaper. These are smaller sizes, with a slightly lower fat content and so are generally more affordable.”

The battle to regain the fish market in Nigeria started in October last year when the Norwegian Seafood Council (NSC) organised a stakeholders’ forum in Lagos to address the challenges they were facing in the country.

The council complained that Norway had been exporting fish to Nigeria market since 1890 without problem.

According to the council’s NSC Director for Central and West Africa, Mr. TrondKostveit, Norwegian exporters were looking into more specify areas in the importation of fish in the country.

He said they would partner the Department of Fisheries for more cooperation with Nigeria importers.

However, the Director, Federal Department of Fisheries, Mr. Mohammed Muazu, who was represented by Deputy Director of Fisheries, Mrs. Adepegba Olabisi, at the forum noted that fish was the most highly traded food commodity in the world.

Muazu said: “The relative low prices of fish compared to other sources of animal protein except pork, has being nutritionally superior to other meats.

“It is common knowledge that there is a wide gap between the demand and supply of fish in Nigeria, hence importation of fish, especially the mackerels, sardinella, hake, croakers and herrings have remained an increasing phenomenon as it is use to bridge the gap.’’ The trade is conspicuously dominated is conservatively estimated at 0.7 million tons”

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

Crude Oil

Oil Jumps to $67.70 as OPEC+ Extends Production Cuts

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opec

Oil Jumps to $67.70 as OPEC+ Extends Production Cuts

Brent crude oil, against which Nigerian oil is priced, rose to $67.70 per barrel on Thursday following the decision of OPEC and allies, known as OPEC+, to extend production cuts.

OPEC and allies are presently debating whether to restore as much as 1.5 million barrels per day of crude oil in April, according to people with the knowledge of the meeting.

Experts have said OPEC+ continuous production cuts could increase global inflationary pressure with the rising price of could oil. However, Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said “I don’t think it will overheat.”

Last year “we suffered alone, we as OPEC+” and now “it’s about being vigilant and being careful,” he said.

Saudi minister added that the additional 1 million barrel-a-day voluntary production cut the kingdom introduced in February was now open-ended. Meaning, OPEC+ will be withholding 7 million barrels a day or 7 percent of global demand from the market– even as fuel consumption recovers in many nations.

Experts have started predicting $75 a barrel by April.

“We expect oil prices to rise toward $70 to $75 a barrel during April,” said Ann-Louise Hittle, vice president of macro oils at consultant Wood Mackenzie Ltd. “The risk is these higher prices will dampen the tentative global recovery. But the Saudi energy minister is adamant OPEC+ must watch for concrete signs of a demand rise before he moves on production.”

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Gold

Gold Hits Eight-Month Low as Global Optimism Grows Amid Rising Demand for Bitcoin

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Gold Struggles Ahead of Economic Recovery as Bitcoin, New Gold, Surges

Global haven asset, gold, declined to the lowest in more than eight months on Tuesday as signs of global economic recovery became glaring with rising bond yields.

The price of the precious metal declined to $1,718 per ounce during London trading on Thursday, down from $2,072 it traded in August as more investors continue to cut down on their holdings of the metal.

The previous metal usually performs poorly with rising yields on other assets like bonds, especially given the fact that gold does not provide streams of interest payments. Investors have been jumping on US bonds ahead of President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus package, expected to stoke stronger US price growth.

We see the rising bond yields as a sign of economic optimism, which has also prompted gold investors to sell some of their positions,” said Carsten Menke of Julius Baer.

Another analyst from Commerzbank, Carsten Fritsch, said that “gold’s reputation appears to have been tarnished considerably by the heavy losses of recent weeks, as evidenced by the ongoing outflows from gold ETFs”.

Experts at Investors King believed the growing demand for Bitcoin, now called the new gold, and other cryptocurrencies in recent months by institutional investors is hurting gold attractiveness.

In a recent report, analysts at Citigroup have started projecting mainstream acceptance for the unregulated dominant cryptocurrency, Bitcoin.

The price of Bitcoin has rallied by 60 percent to $52,000 this year alone. While Ethereum has risen by over 660 percent in 2021.

 

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Crude Oil

Oil Prices Extend Gains to $64.32 Ahead of OPEC+ Meeting

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Oil Prices Rise to $64.32 Amid Expected Output Extension

Oil prices extended gains during the early hours of Thursday trading session amid the possibility that OPEC+ producers might not increase output at a key meeting scheduled for later in the day and the drop in U.S refining.

Brent crude oil, against which Nigeria oil is priced, gained 0.4 percent or 27 cents to $64.32 per barrel as at 7:32 am Nigerian time on Thursday. While the U.S West Texas Intermediate gained 19 cents or 0.3 percent to $61.47 a barrel.

“Prices hinge on Russia’s and Saudi Arabia’s preference to add more crude oil production,” said Stephen Innes, global market strategist at Axi. “Perhaps more interesting is the lack of U.S. shale response to the higher crude oil prices, which is favourable for higher prices.”

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and allies, together known as OPEC+, are looking to extend production cuts into April against expected output increase due to the fragile state of the global oil market.

Oil traders and businesses had been expecting the oil cartel to ease production by around 500,000 barrels per day since January 2021 but because of the coronavirus risk and rising global uncertainties, OPEC+ was forced to role-over production cuts until March. Experts now expect that this could be extended to April given the global situation.

“OPEC+ is currently meeting to discuss its current supply agreement. This raised the spectre of a rollover in supply cuts, which also buoyed the market,” ANZ said in a report.

Meanwhile, U.S crude oil inventories rose by more than a record 21 million barrels last week as refining plunged to a record-low amid Texas weather that knocked out power from homes.

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