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Newly designed vessels will keep fishers in Somalia safer at sea

Friday July 9, 2021

One of the modern vessels on a test ride in Somalia - June 2021

MOGADISHU, SOMALIA - FAO handed over a new inshore fishing vessel to the Jubaland Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources after a groundbreaking delivery trip from Bosaso to Kismayo, a voyage of over 1,000 Nautical miles.  Three of these new vessels, designed by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) have been made by Hidig Boat Factory, Bosaso, under the European Union (EU) funded Coastal Communities Against Piracy project.

“I was worried when I was first asked to sail to Kismayo in this season of monsoon weather, but my crew and I were amazed at how strong the boat was,” stated Mohamed Yusuf, the Captain of the boat.  He continued, “All the fisherfolk we passed on the way, the local authorities and the public couldn’t believe how the boat managed to navigate such weather conditions and made it to Kismayo so easily. Many people took photos with the boat, and asked about possible purchase.”

Locally built and designed to meet all international quality and safety standards, the vessels feature a low power, low emission diesel engine, with fuel consumption lower than any outboard powered vessel. The new vessels are also equipped with modern electronic navigation and safety gear. The vessels include the hydraulic capacity for modern low impact fishing techniques, which will be introduced as part of the training curriculum under a recently launched EU funded project called Resilient Fisheries and Livestock Value Chain for Inclusive and Sustainable Growth in Somalia (RAAISE).

“The vessel also has a cabin for the crew, a built-in icebox with a 7 metric ton capacity for fish and ice,” said Salad Adan, Managing Director for the Hidig Boat Factory.  Adan added, “We are grateful to the technical support and input we have received from FAO, that means Somalia for the first time has the skill and capacity to build the highest specification of inshore vessel, rather than relying on imported technologies.”

A wave of new boats to boost the local economy and livelihoods

During a demonstration trip onboard the vessel, the Minister for Fisheries and Marine Resources of Jubaland State of Somalia, Abass Ali Ibrahim said, “I would like to thank FAO and the EU, on behalf of the Ministry, for the delivery of the 10.3 M Vessel and the EU for their generosity in supporting Somali fisheries communities under the Coastal Communities Against Piracy Project (CCAP). This vessel will be used for safety training and training in new fishing techniques and I hope it is a great example of a sustainable solution to our fisheries.”

Between now and September, 2024, through the EU funded RAAISE project, FAO will continue to provide technical support and training to fishing communities across Somalia boosting skills and improving livelihoods for fisher men and women.

The Ambassador of the European Union to Somalia Nicolás Berlanga Martínez said, “This modern vessel was designed and built in Somalia by local technicians. We are confident our support develops skills in the private sector that can lead to better fishing and job opportunities, especially for the young people of Somalia. The European Union is proud to support the efforts of FAO and local authorities of coastal communities.” 

The 10.3 metre vessel is designed to provide a flexible arrangement suitable for both fishing and training. Designed and built in Somalia, the vessel is just one improvement in the fish supply chain aiming to deliver fresh, safe and nutritious fish to consumers in Somalia and abroad.

“Alongside solar powered flake ice machines and refrigerated transport vehicles supplied through the CCAP project, the interventions are not only boosting production and livelihoods, but generating new job opportunities for the nation’s youth,” stated John Purvis, FAO Somalia Project Manager.


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