In 2015, the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi articulated his vision for oceans (Sagar), "Our goal is to seek a climate of trust and transparency; respect for international maritime rules and norms by all countries; sensitivity to each other's interests; peaceful resolution of maritime security issues; and increase in maritime cooperation".
The conference is a platform for following up on PM Modi's vision. A number of issues including maritime security, ocean trade, ocean resources management, marine environment and climate are being discussed at the SAGAR conference this year.
Speaking at the conference, India's Minister of State for External Affairs, M J Akbar emphasized the need to respect countries sovereignty at sea and called for a common approach to maritime regulations.
Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari expressed his plans to transfer transport from roads to the sea and inland waterways.
In this regard, the program Sagar Mala which focuses on developing and modernising ports along India's coastline, will be very important. Furthermore, Minister Gadkari expressed an interest in green shipping technology including LNG powered ships.
-Ocean Resource Management
Several Norwegian speakers were invited to share experiences in managing our ocean resources. In Norway, ecosystem based management plans safeguard the marine environment, and facilitate the co-existence of different industries, particularly the fisheries industry, maritime transport and petroleum industry.
Jan Fredrik Danielsen from the Norwegian Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries spoke about Norway's collaboration with Russia in managing common fish stocks. This is a crucial area for India that also shares common fish stocks with neighboring countries. The Norwegian-Russian collaboration has avoided depleting fish stocks by establishing research based fish quotas and regulations in fisheries, which is a good example for other countries to follow.
Also taking part from Norway was Innovation Norway's Asia director Ole Henæs, who emphasized the complementary roles of business, government and research institutions in creating fertile grounds for development and innovation of sustainable technologies in the ocean space.
The opportunity was also utilised to present business possibilities in the ocean space. Head of Innovation Norway in India, Helge Tryti, emphasized Norwegian businesses stellar expertise in building battery and LNG powered ships as well as aquaculture and service delivery for various offshore activities. (ANI)