GRADUATION CEROMONY OF SEPEL COHORT

ADDRESS BY HIGH COMMISSIONER – CONRAD MEDERIC -GRADUATION CEROMONY OF SEPEL COHORT

FRIDAY, 01ST NOVEMBER 2019

– Captain Ajith Pieris – President of CINEC

– Officials of CINEC and course Instructors

– Mr. Conrad Benoiton and delegation from SEYPEC;

– Graduates

– Parents and friends of students.

It is indeed a privilege to be amongst all of you today as 12 of our young trainees have completed a world-class training in maritime and is now ready to journey to the next phase of their careers. This is also the ideal occasion for me to show my gratitude to the CINEC campus, for your cooperation in educating all of our young, prospective sea farers both here in Sri Lanka and in Seychelles, and for equipping students with the right knowledge and technical exposure that is needed to fare in this challenging yet rewarding career they have chosen for themselves.

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A global industry which has become the lifeline of international trade and of global economies, international shipping and maritime related activities have undoubtedly created brighter career prospects for our young Seychellois. Being surrounded by vast oceanic resources and global shipping routes international shipping and maritime affairs of Seychelles has become a lifeline for our economy, as our Government continues to pursue the development of fisheries, shipping and maritime tourism. As international standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for seafarers continue to be strongly enforced, Seychelles continuously strives to equip its maritime professionals with the best technical expertise in navigating the seas and in providing a progressive service to the nation’s economy. In this regard, Seychelles Maritime Academy shares a growing partnership with CINEC in training Seychellois sea farers under a capable and dedicated Management team, that has also greatly improved the quality of training standards at the Seychelles Maritime Academy. And as you all know, Seychelles maritime academy is now proudly the first Seychelles institute to be ISO certified, an achievement that was made possible under the partnership and assistance CINEC.

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Apart from this partnership, our two nations share a common agenda in the area of maritime tourism and maritime conservation. As island nations surrounded by a vast area of maritime resources, which contributes significantly to our economies, we have a great commitment in conserving our seas and its resources, and in utilizing this network of maritime assets for the development of our economies without endangering the integrity of our oceans. While Sri Lanka’s coastal lines and marine biology continue to be conserved by numerous private and governmental associations such as the Marine Environment Protection Authority, the marine biodiversity and ocean waters surrounding Seychelles are too being protected through numerous efforts. In 2018, the Government of Seychelles opened two areas dedicated for marine protection of 210,000 Square Kilometers, which is the first phase of a Marine Spatial Plan – the first such plan to be carried out in the Indian Ocean. With each country having distinct strongholds within its marine sectors, our countries have much to exchange in terms of maritime expertise and conservation know-how, and it gives me great hope that the Governments of the two nations will continue to embrace these strengths in the years to come.

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Our nations are now at a conjunction where areas of cooperation such as in Education are being pursued through agreements, as seen during the state visit to Seychelles by His Excellency President Maithripala Sirisena in October of last year, where discussions were also centered on additoonal areas, with fisheries and maritime being two notable sectors. And with 30 years of diplomatic relations between our nations, we can optimistically look forward to more projects being expedited for the benefit of our economies and for the progress of our industries.

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Focusing on today’s momentous occasion, I congratulate all 12 students who have benefitted from the partnership between Seychelles and CINEC which has helped you all in furthering your maritime careers, and I believe it was an absolutely life-changing experience that you are concluding today.

As students graduating from CINEC, all 12 of you have a unique advantage to further your professional paths with the training received. And as employees of the Seychelles Petroleum Company you are now well positioned within an international career path in Maritime and Logistics. As you all know, with six world-class double-hull tankers under its ownership, SEYPEC owns an international trading fleet engaged in the storage and distribution of oil to some of the world’s best oil traders with logistical services that stretch inland as well. And under the Company, you are guaranteed to receive the best exposure in international sea faring, allowing you to reap the maximum benefits of a prospective career.

I wish all 12 of you a bright future and every opportunity to further your career in maritime and logistics, while providing your most invaluable service to your motherland.

And finally, I extend my most sincerest gratitude to CINEC for having me here today and wish the institution the very best in creating ground breaking achievements as a world class academy.

Thank you and I wish you all a pleasant day…