The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is currently preparing for an increase in bilateral development cooperation with the government of Sierra Leone. The main goal of the collaboration is to work on new projects in the field of fisheries and the blue economy.
A delegation consisting of representatives of four fisheries agencies in Iceland as well as representatives of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs went to Sierra Leone at the end of March last year to examine the involvement of Icelandic experts in projects that can support the positive development of fisheries and the blue economy in that country.
Matís' representative on this trip was Oddur Már Gunnarsson, but in addition there were representatives from the Marine Research Institute, the Directorate of Fisheries and the GRÓ Fisheries School. The delegation met with the country's Minister of Fisheries as well as other representatives of the Ministry, other agencies and companies and representatives of partner countries involved in fisheries in Sierra Leone.
The group also visited landing sites for coastal fishing boats and gained an insight into the life of fishing communities, where fish are handled, processed and marketed. About 70% of landed catch in Sierra Leone comes from coastal fishing.
Following this trip, work will be done with the Ministry for Foreign Affairs on further implementation of projects where Icelandic ingenuity and knowledge can be used in the development of fisheries and the blue economy in Sierra Leone.