THE LAUNCH OF AFRICAN SHIP OWNERS ASSOCIATION IN SYCHELLES

The President of the Republic of Seychelles, Mr Danny Faure, officially launched the first African Shipowners Association Summit 2018 during an official opening ceremony held at the Savoy Resort this morning.

The 2018 African Shipowners Association Summit is being held from 23 to 25 April 2018, and is hosted for the first time in Seychelles by the Seychelles Petroleum Company Limited (SEYPEC) in collaboration with the African Association of Shipowners, Department of Foreign Affairs and the African Union Commission under the guided theme “Promoting African Ownership and Participation in African’s Shipping and Maritime Sectors.”



During his address to officially declare the summit open, President Faure highlighted the importance of such an event and for the African continent to seize the rich opportunities that the maritime sector offers, particularly in terms of sea trade. He also said that the event is an occasion to focus on the promotion of African ownership and participation in shipping and maritime sectors.

“The African continent is the second biggest continent in the world, with a total coastline of over 26,000 nautical miles, including its islands. 38 out of 54 countries on the continent are either coastal or island states. International trade is a vital economic activity to many African countries, of which over 90% is conducted by sea.  Yet, it is estimated that African owned ships account for only about 1.2% of the world shipping by number and 0.9% by gross tonnage. This illustrates significant room for improvement and growth on the current overall outlook in this important sector for our economies,” said President Faure.

President Faure also emphasised that the summit provides an ideal platform for interaction, information sharing, and exploration of ideas on how the African shipping and maritime sectors can be developed further to achieve a higher yield for the continent.

“As the Host of this Summit, Seychelles, despite being a small island state, has much to share with our African counterparts. The geographical setup of our islands is made up of only 450 square kilometres of land but an Economic Exclusive Zone of 1.5 million square kilometres.  This has compelled us to venture towards the sea in developing Seychelles into the High-Income Country that it is today. During this two day summit, it is expected that we learn from each other and leave with additional knowledge, insight, and inspiration on how we can capitalise on the opportunities that exist within the maritime industry in Africa and beyond, for the benefits of the African continent and its people,” said President Faure

During the ceremony the President also announced the allocation of land in Seychelles for the construction of a Pan African Shipping Line Head Office as a centre for all shipowners in Africa, which will act as a hub for all activities related to the shipping and maritime sectors.

The two day summit includes the participation of representatives of African Shipowners Association, African Union, Shipowners, representative of Ports, Government officials and other relevant African maritime authorities who will take part in the working sessions and discussions.

Also present for the ceremony this morning was the Vice President of Seychelles, Mr Vincent Meriton, the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Barry Faure, the Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine, Ambassador Maurice Loustau-Lalanne, Ministers, AU Commissioners, the Secretary General of the African Shipowners Association (ASA), Ms Funmi Folorunso, the Chief Executive Officer of the Seychelles Petroleum Company (SEYPEC), Mr Conrad Benoiton, Principal Secretaries, Summit delegates and other distinguished guests