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Part I Statistics and main indicators

  1. Country brief
  2. General geographic and economic indicators
  3. FAO Fisheries statistics

The Profile (2019)

    Additional information

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    2. Publications
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    Part I Statistics and main indicators

    Part I of the Fishery and Aquaculture Country Profile is compiled using the most up-to-date information available from the FAO Country briefs and Statistics programmes at the time of publication. The Country Brief and the FAO Fisheries Statistics provided in Part I may, however, have been prepared at different times, which would explain any inconsistencies.

    Country briefPrepared: September 2019

    Liberia has a total land area of about 111 370 km2, of which 15 050 km2 (14 percent) is wetlands. There are large swamp areas and numerous coastal lagoons, including Lake Piso, one of West Africa’s largest lagoons. With an Atlantic coastline of about 570 km, a continental shelf averaging 34 km in width, the country has about 20 000 km2 of continental shelf fishing grounds.

    National fisheries have three main subcomponents: marine industrial fisheries, involving tuna and mixed-demersal vessels, marine artisanal fisheries, and inland artisanal fisheries. In 2017, total marine production was reported around 12600 tonnes and estimated inland fishery production was 2200 tonnes.

    In 2017, at last estimate, the country had a total of 390 vessels with 45 decked vessels between 18-60m LOA. The undecked vessels were split with just under 1 000 small unpowered and 345 powered under 12m LOA.

    Aquaculture consists of subsistence farming of tilapia and catfish in earthen ponds, with an estimated annual production of 45 tonnes in 2017. The large irrigation potential of the country (600 000 ha) could be used to develop integrated irrigation-aquaculture practices as well as rice-fish culture which has been tested on demonstration scale in recent years.

    The last estimate of employment data from 2017, was a total of 35 054 people in both fisheries and aquaculture with 1 460 people engaged in inland fishing and 33 222 in marine fisheries and the remainder in aquaculture. At present about 20 percent of the animal protein supply comes from fish. There was a considerable decline in the availability of fish protein since the civil war broke out. Per capita fish consumption decreased from about 15 kg in the pre-war period to an estimated 6.0 kg in 2016 and has not yet recovered. In 2017, the estimated exports of fish and fishery products were valued at USD 0.6 million, while imports at USD 7.3 million.

    Extensive damage was done to the Liberian fisheries and aquaculture sector during the war. Furthermore, there should be problems of illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing taking place in Liberian waters, as shown by some satellite tracking. In 2007 a process was initiated to develop a national fisheries and aquaculture policy, but it was not completed at the time. There is also a need for a new fisheries and aquaculture law and the accompanying regulations, an urgent need to improve fish preservation and distribution within Liberia in order to make better use of its fisheries resources.
    General geographic and economic indicators

    Key statistics

    Country area111 370km2FAOSTAT. Official data, 2013
    Land area96 320km2FAOSTAT. Official data, 2013
    Inland water area15 050km2Computed. Calculated, 2013
    Population - Est. & Proj.5.04millionsFAOSTAT. Official data, 2019
    Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) area252 894km2VLIZ

    Source: FAO Country Profile

    FAO Fisheries statistics

    Updated 2019The Profile

    This country profile provides statistics and indicators produced through FAO’s Statistics programmes, supplemented with information derived from national and other sources and valid at the time of compilation.

    Full text of the Fisheries and Aquaculture Country Profile available at /fishery/docs/DOCUMENT/fcp/en/FI_CP_LR.pdf

    Additional information

    FAO Thematic data bases

    Meetings & News archive


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