Seychelles-India Successful completion of hydrographic surveys bodes well for the Blue Economy | 17 January 2020
Considering the growing Blue Economy programme by the government of Seychelles and the complexities and safety involved with it, an outstanding initiative was undertaken by the government of Seychelles towards carrying out survey of three of its most important islands – Mahé, Praslin and La Digue, with the assistance of the government of India through Indian naval ship INS Darshak. This has been a perfect start to the year 2020 towards the defence and Blue Economy cooperation between both countries.
While originally INS Darshak planned to carry out hydrographic survey off Praslin and La Digue, an immediate request for survey of Port Victoria by the government of Seychelles set the pace of operations much higher for the crew of the naval ship. The successful and timely completion of survey of all three islands has saved the government of Seychelles millions of dollars considering the big project of port expansion at Port Victoria and dredging required therein. This survey will also ensure that the mariners will shortly get updated navigational charts for Port Victoria, Praslin and La Digue. This would keep the harbours as well as the seafarers in safer waters giving the required boost to the Blue Economy of Seychelles.
Towards the survey, professional interactions took place onboard INS Darshak between the high commissioner of India, General Dalbir Singh Suhag (retd), Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports & Marine Didier Dogley and principal secretary for civil aviation, ports & marine, Alan Renaud, on January 13, 2020.
The relation between India and Seychelles is unique and special, founded on deep sense of mutual trust and confidence and marked by a spirit of respect and equality. The excellent planning of the government of Seychelles and India with support from the Indian Navy and Seychelles Coast Guard (SCG) were huge enabler of a successful survey of the three islands. The hard work put in by team Darshak and the professionalism shown by personnel from SCG has been praiseworthy and will also set the pace for the proposed formulation of a new hydrographic vertical in Seychelles.
Year 2020 marks a new beginning to a great chapter of cooperation between the two friendly vibrant democracies.