Australian High Commissioner applauds Seychelles for environmental leadership

Australia is committed to working in partnership with Seychelles and other countries in the region to tackle maritime security challenges including drug trafficking and illegal fishing, the Australian High Commissioner to Seychelles said.

Following a courtesy call to President Danny Faure at State House, Victoria on Tuesday, Jenny Dee told the press that the Australian alumni in Seychelles are helping to achieve this.

My visit was timed to coincide with a workshop held on Monday by Australian alumni with stakeholders looking at community-based drug rehabilitation programme. The number one priority for the Seychelles' government and concerned stakeholders is addressing the drug crisis, said Dee.

She added that her visit to the 115-island archipelago in the western Indian Ocean coincides with important announcements in the blue economy sector.

We continue to commend Seychelles on the leadership role that it has taken internationally on the blue economy and environmental issues including the official launch of the blue bond in the Oceans Conference in Indonesia this week, said Dee.

On his side, President Faure welcomed the Australian High Commissioner back to Seychelles and underlined that her working visit would reinforce the excellent relations between the two countries. Faure also thanked the Australian government for all the support given to Seychelles, especially in the area of strengthening the financial and economic system.

The High Commissioner told the press that a new partnership has been signed by Australia's leading scientific organisation, CSIRO, with the Seychelles Fisheries Authority. Through the partnership, the organisation and the authority will assess on fish stocks and carry out other researches and assessment within the fisheries sector.

Another agreement signed was one between the Financial Intelligence Unit of Seychelles and the Australian equivalent - AUSTRAC - looking at greater information sharing on anti-money laundering and financing to counter terrorism.

Knowing that the financial service sector is such an important part of Seychelles' economy, it is really good to see this partnership in this sphere growing, said Dee.

During her three-day visit in the country, Dee, who is based in Port Louis, Mauritius, will meet with a number of ministers and institutional leaders.

On Wednesday she is expected to pay a courtesy call to the Leader of the Opposition. Following this, she will meet with members of the Seychelles Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Our interest is also to understand the commercial environment and to see what we can do to promote greater commercial activities, said Dee.

She also outlined that she will hold dialogues with the Seychelles Human's Right Commission and other human's rights stakeholders as Australia has an agenda that is focused around supporting the rights of women and girls as well as strong independent democratic institutions like Human Rights institutions.

The Australian High Commissioner was accredited on August 8, 2017.

Source: Seychelles News Agency

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