Fishing contracted by 2.07 percent in the third quarter of 2020, lower than 5.68 percent recorded for the second quarter of 2020.
Nigeria's fishing industry recorded the worst performance amongst all subsectors of the country's agricultural sector in the third quarter of 2020, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) figures released by the National Bureau of Statistics show.
Measured as part of the GDP of the agricultural sector, fishing was the only sub-sector out of four that contracted.
The other sub-sectors are crop production, livestock and forestry.
While crop production grew by 1.38 per cent in the third quarter, livestock grew by 2.29 per cent and forestry grew by 2.55 per cent, making forestry the best performer in the quarter.
Fishing, on the other hand, contracted by -2.07 per cent.
In terms of contribution, crop production recorded the best performance, and accounted for 92.93 per cent of the overall nominal growth of the sector in the quarter.
Agriculture on the whole contributed 28.1 per cent to the nominal GDP in the third quarter of 2020, higher than the figures recorded in the second quarter of 2020 and the third quarter of 2019.
Nigeria's fish industry has perpetually underperformed over the years due to government's negligence of the sector.
Majority of operators in the sector are peasant farmers who work there just to earn a living.
The sector, which thrives mostly in the southern part of the country and some parts of the north, is an important tool for rural development. Its relevance to the economy derives from the high demand of fish as a major source of protein in the country.
As reported by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), fish farming was able to employ about 13,000 people in 2012 in Nigeria.
In real terms, Nigeria's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) recorded a growth rate of -3.62 percent in the third quarter of 2020, another downward growth compared to what was recorded in the second quarter of the year (-6.10 percent).
The successive quarterly downward growth implies that Nigeria has gone into recession for the second time in four years.