Financial Predicament in the Midst of Abundant Natural Resources: A Study of the Fishing Business in the Coaster Area of Ondo State, Nigeria
This paper examines the reasons for the poor economic development in the Coaster Area of Ondo State, Nigeria, despites the presence of the rich natural resources (mineral, water, land, forest and touristic resources), and how to enhance the financial status of the people in the oilrich region, who mainly engaged in fishing activities. Descriptive statistic was employed to analyse the primary data collected through well-structured face-to-face interviews and focused group discussions (FGD) with the fishermen and community leaders. The paper proves that the financial predicament of the people emanates from the exploration and exploitation activities of the oil companies operating in the region which had resulted to environmental degradation causing poverty, lack of access to finance, and poor infrastructure. The paper suggests that, in view of the great economic value of fishing all over the world and its contributions to economic development, government and the intervention agencies must provide financial resources and facilitate investment in fishing equipment and infrastructural development, as well as proper management of environmental degradation and eradication of poverty for sustainable fishing business and economic well-being of the people in the area.
Key words: Financial status; Fishing business; Coaster area; Poverty; Economic development
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