The Marine Institute and (KMFRI) have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) agreement.
The agreement was signed as part of the visit of the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Simon Coveney, TD, to Kenya and Ethiopia this week. His visit also included the launch of a new Kenya Ireland agri-food strategy, meetings with Irish companies doing business in the region and the opening of the new Irish Embassy in Nairobi.
The MOU between the Marine Institute and KMFRI aims to promote focused areas of cooperation. This will foster an increased level of understanding and interchange of ideas for the mutual benefit of the Irish and Kenyan marine sectors and to establish and grow a strong working relationship between the two parties.
Peter Heffernan, CEO of the Marine Institute, welcomed the signing of the MOU.
"We are very much looking forward to working on areas of cooperation with KMFRI in the coming years," said Dr Heffernan. "It is an excellent opportunity for both institutes to share expertise and knowledge. We are at an exciting time in terms of marine research, and agreements such as these assist with a sense of collaboration and progress, particularly on an international level."
A delegation of officials from the Kenyan Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and the Blue Economy (MALFBE) visited the Marine Institute in Oranmore in February 2016. They were given a broad overview of the work carried out by the MI and the broad range of research vessel surveys that support the work of the MI.
In August 2016, the Irish Embassy in Nairobi invited Dr. Paul Connolly, Director of Fisheries Ecosystems Advisory Services at the Marine Institute, to visit and give a talk on the experience of Ireland with the Blue Economy and, in particular, the Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth process.
Following on from these and other meetings, a Memorandum of Understanding between the two institutes was proposed and was entered into this week. Principal areas of cooperation to be pursued under the agreement will initially focus on the following areas of mutual interest:
• Marine Fisheries Management Plans
• Hydro Acoustics and Assessment of Pelagic Fisheries Resources
• Spatial Analyses and Mapping of Vessel Monitoring Systems (VMS) Data
• Integration of VMS and Logbook data for Fisheries Management
• Data Management – Best Practice
• Study Visits and Exchange of Experts
• The Establishment of a joint PhD and Post Doctoral research projects
Information on KMFRI can be found on its website - www.kmfri.co.ke