Following the discovery of an 11th Covid-19 case in Seychelles, a lockdown period of almost a month was enforced. Mahe Shipping continued to provide clearing and forwarding services to the community throughout this period, including some staff working from home and a skeleton staff at Head Office. With no further cases detected and lockdown restrictions eased the company is now operating full steam ahead once again, as illustrated in this photo from Andy Gobine, Head of Freight Forwarding and Relocations.
The Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine Didier Dogley has announced a ban on visiting cruiseships with immediate effect until the beginning of 2022. An indefinite ban was already in place in the wake of the Covid-19 crisis. Given that cruise itineraries are typically scheduled two or more years in advance, the long term impact of this measure will undoubtedly be felt for many years to come.
There have been 11 cases of Covid-19 in Seychelles and no deaths. All cases have been linked directly or indirectly to Seychelles International Airport and incoming flights.
Seychelles waters have been closed to cruise ships with immediate effect. Announcing the decision, Didier Dogley, Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports & Marine said "Following our discussion and based on the global situation where we have seen the number of people infected and also its spread, the way it is being transmitted all over the world, especially in Europe, where most of our clients come from, we have decided with immediate effect to annul all activities related to cruise ships in Seychelles’ waters.”
Jude Gedeon from Seychelles Health authority added, “The route of the cruise ship during the last 14 days is not always clear. What contacts have they made in the ports they’ve gone through? And the one coming tomorrow has gone through several ports which has had transmissions of the coronavirus so with abundance of caution we have decided that it is not a good idea to take the risk and let passengers disembark".
“In principle when you have a suspected case in a crowd going into its thousands, management to take care of up to 3,000 people, we do not have the resources to do that. Even if we say we will isolate them in their boat, if someone falls sick on board whose conditions worsens and as per WHO’s regulations, the person must be bought to land for treatment. Our facilities do not allow us to take large numbers”.
The survey vessel Geo Resolution has visited Mahe, with Mahe Shipping Company acting as ship's agents. Geo Resolution is a specialist survey vessel, acquired by EGS in 2014. Prior to that the 68m long and 13m wide vessel was engaged as a US and later New Zealand Navy hydrographic survey vessel.
Geo Resolution has completed a survey for a second submarine cable, collecting data to be analysed in connection with the project. The survey is required to determine the precise location for the placement of the cable.
The full story can be read here:
Seychelles Nation 03.03.2020
A Sri Lankan registered fishing boat has been intercepted by the Seychelles Coast Guard (SCG) on suspicion of fishing illegally in the Seychelles Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).
This is the first arrest of 2020 relating to suspected illegal fishing in Seychelles waters. In 2019, there were seven cases, resulting in five successful prosecutions.
The boat with seven fishermen on board was spotted by a Seychelles Air Force Dornier aircraft during a routine patrol south of Mahé on 26 February . The Seychelles Coast Guard Patrol ship Etoile was quickly dispatched to intercept the vessel. On boarding in the morning of 27 February, the inspectors from Seychelles Fishing Authority noted evidence of possible illegal fishing activities. The boat was escorted to Port Victoria,and an investigation has begun.
Seychelles Ports Authority (SPA), Seychelles Investment Board (SIB) and the Blue Economy department are coordinating a study to assess the potential to establish a full-scale, professional ship repair industry in the country. The research will consider technical, environmental, administrative, legal, social and economic factors in the local context.
Mundy Penfold Limited (MPL), a UK-based consultancy firm won the bid for the project through open international tender. Mike Mundy and Andrew Penfold of MPL arrived in Seychelles on 19 January for a fact-finding mission.
The study is expected to last 6 months with the final report submitted in June 2020.
On the Saturday 7 December 2019, Rolly Cafrine, Head of Finance at Mahe Shipping Co. Ltd was married to Marie Stella Lucas. The service was held at the Saint Jean Bosco Church at Pointe Larue, followed by reception at the Harbour Café Restaurant, Espace Building in Victoria.
Members of Mahe Shipping's Board of Directors, Management Team and some staff members were among the guests invited to share in the special day of Rolly and Marie Stella at the ceremony and reception.
Congratulations to Rolly and Marie Stella (whose intials now match the company, MSC!) from everyone at Mahe Shipping.
Seychelles Nation article, by Laura Pillay:
Employees, former employees and partners of Mahé Shipping Company Limited joined together to celebrate the company’s 50th anniversary and its achievements in the shipping industry, in a brief ceremony at Harbour Café, Espace Building, on Friday evening.
The ceremony commenced with a brief look into the company’s history and the transitions over the years before Director and Editorial Director Adrian Skerrett unveiled the newly launched book Seychelles, Ships and the Sea, a major historical work sponsored by Mahé Shipping Company in commemoration of the milestone anniversary.
The hardback historical work, on sale for R400, is a unique collaborative effort between some of the leading experts on the history of Seychelles and maritime affairs in the region and is lavishly illustrated with photographs and maps.
Mr Skerrett himself has contributed twelve chapters and his wife Judith Skerrett, the Assistant Editor, contributed a further four chapters to the book. There is a chapter each contributed by William McAteer (whaling ships), Julien Durup (schooners), Tony Mathiot (lighthouses), Malinda Skerrett (pirates) and Gerry Adam (the modern port and the future). There are also personal stories from Lorna Drake and Gitanne Gendron, two Seychelloise whose lives have been hugely influenced by the shipping links of Seychelles.
The book is Mr Skerrett’s twenty-first book about Seychelles, 11 of which have been published by Camerapix International, based in Nairobi.
Mr Skerrett thanked all who contributed towards the book, emphasising the importance of the sea for Seychelles, the smallest of the 54 African countries.
“Seychelles is a small country in terms of land mass but Seychelles has always punched above its weight for one reason, and that is the sea. Seychelles has an Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of 1.4 million square metres. It has the second largest EEZ of 54 African countries,” Mr Skerrett noted, highlighting the benefits that the country reaps from economic activities in the EEZ.
Invitees were all given a copy of the book and a small token of appreciation.
Managing Director of Mahe Shipping, Joe Morin, has been with the company for 25 years where he started as a junior staff and gradually worked his way up. He was appointed managing director in September 2017. Outlining his experience working for the company, Mr Morin referred to it as being in a university.
“Shipping is a vast industry and it evolves and changes quite quickly. The job is challenging but also one which is fulfilling and through which one can learn so much,” he said.
Mr Morin further emphasised that the company remains committed towards evolving to meet the needs and demands of the market stating “I see a bright light at the end of the tunnel for Mahé Shipping in the years to come”.
Mahe Shipping joined forces with Corvina Investment Company and H Savy Insurance to sponsor the Annual Club Championship for the Seychelles Golf Club during the first weekend of November.
“The SGC members are extremely grateful to the amazing sponsors, Corvina Investments, H Savy Insurance and Mahe Shipping, who have once again, come through with great support for the competition,” said SGC captain Michael Lavigne.
Seychelles Nation reported "a great turnout of participants, in all the respective categories of handicap, Gold, Silver, Bronze, and also sectors such as for Ladies, Juniors and Pros, but all eyes were set on the main challenge, that of the overall club champion".
Prozes were presented by Captain Guy Adam (Corvina and retired Chairman of Mahe Shipping), Mrs Hoareau (H Savy) and Joe Morin (Mahe Shipping Managing Director) together with our club captain Michael Lavigne.
The full Seychelles Nation review of the tournament can be read here.