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Australian HC Coles holds cordial meeting with VP Meriton

meritonAustralian high commissioner Susan Coles paid a courtesy call on Vice-President Vincent Meriton yesterday at State House and described the meeting as “very cordial and warm”.

“We spoke about the close relationship that Australia and Seychelles share. We are neighbours in the Indian Ocean, members of the Indian Ocean Rim Association, we work together across a number of sectors including education and the Blue Economy,” said High Commissioner Coles.

Based in Mauritius, Mrs Coles said she is here to attend the launch of Seychelles’ new national gender policy as the world commemorated the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women yesterday. The event took place at the Avani hotel yesterday morning.

She added that she discussed with VP Meriton how the Australian scholarship programme has helped Seychelles, adding that her “country provides capacity building in other areas like finance, customs, and taxation”.

Mrs Coles also said “the vice-president commented on the fact that so many Seychellois have benefitted from Australian higher education including through the Australia Awards programme”.

“At the moment our short course applications are open till mid-January for courses in ocean governance and fisheries, public policy, environment and agricultural development”, she noted, added that Australia has a strong alumni here.

The high commissioner explained that a number of Australians are working in Seychelles and collaborating with the Seychelles government.

She explained that Seychelles and Australia enjoy close relations when it comes to developing Sids’ resilience to disaster management.

“We know Seychelles has taken a leading role in working on issues of climate change, resilience and disaster management,” said Mrs Coles who noted that Seychelles and Australia have a “shared interest in our shared Indian Ocean and our shared planet and environment”.

The high commissioner pointed out that Australia is working very closely with Seychelles on issues regarding the Blue Economy and accompanying her on the visit to Seychelles are two Australian scientists one of whom is specialised in the Blue Economy and the other specialises in ocean and atmosphere research.

The two scientists were to give a public talk yesterday at the Guy Morel Institute and give information about Australia’s scholarship programmes.

Mrs Coles noted that they will also have meetings to discuss Australia’s cooperation on the issues of the Blue economy, environment, nature conservation, turtle hatching, fisheries, oil and gas exploration, and training of young Seychellois to work in the ocean and Blue economy sector.

Source : Seychelles NATION

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