Sunday, May 19, 2024
Home > Business & Finance > Japan donates patrol vessels to enhance surveillance

Japan donates patrol vessels to enhance surveillance

The Government of Japan has donated six patrol vessels worth Sh.306 million to the State Department of Blue Economy and Fisheries to enhance surveillance and combat illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing in Kenya’s territorial waters.

Mining, Blue Economy and Maritime Cabinet Secretary Salim Mvurya said during the launch of the vessels by Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua in Mombasa that the blue economy is the next frontier in economic development thus the need to enhance security in the blue spaces.

“We have looked at the entire sector and one of the key priorities is to ensure that artisanal fishermen are now able to do fishing as a business.

All Beach Management Units (BMUs) will be put in cooperative society in readiness to venture into industrial fishing,’’ said Mvurya, adding that landing sites will be constructed.

Japanese Ambassador to Kenya Okaniwa Ken said the six vessels were in addition to 19 vessels that they had previously presented to the Kenya Coast Guard Service (KCGS).

The patrol vessels, Okaniwa said will ensure there was a rule of law, safety and security in the seas.

“I hope that illegal fishing will be diminished and people from these areas can benefit from fishing resources in the sea,’’ said the ambassador, adding that Japan cherishes its cooperation with Kenya.

The Japanese Ambassador also noted the need to capacity-build the fisher folk to tap into the blue economy sector.

Blue Economy and Fisheries PS Betsy Njagi said the Kenya blue economic zone is very rich in fisheries resources.

However, it was facing a challenge of illegal, unprotected and unregulated fishing that remains one of the greatest threats to marine and aquatic systems.

“To protect the country’s blue economy sector, stronger fisheries regulations and management are critical. The patrol vessels will be used to support the enforcement of regulations through monitoring, control and surveillance however these efforts need cooperation among multi-agency partners,’’ said the PS.

Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua said the government will inject resources to fast track development of the blue economy, which is an important enabler of the Bottom up Economic Transformation Agenda (BETA).

By Sadik Hassan

Leave a Reply