The Port of Durban has welcomed the world’s most technologically advanced marine research vessel, The Doctor Fridtjof Nansen.

The vessel is responsible for housing the EAF-Nansen programme that supports African countries to manage their fisheries industries in a sustainable way.

The ground-breaking programme stems from an agreement between South Africa’s Department of Agriculture, Forests and Fisheries and The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations.

Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Senzeni Zokwana says the long term health of the ocean and its inhabitants, is crucial to the livelihoods of many fishing communities along South Africa’s vast coastline.

Zokwana says, “For the first time in the history of South Africa the President recently signed into law the amendment of the marine living resources act which recognises the dignity of the fishing communities to enable them to participate in the harvesting of the fish resources that exist in the communities in which they reside. We are excited and looking forward to these surveys.”