Norway launches new marine strategy

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THE Norwegian government has set out its first detailed maritime strategy which includes the cultivation and harvesting of new fish species.
Launching the plan, industry minister Torbjørn Røe Isaksen said: ‘The sea is one of the most important areas Norway will focus on in the future. Our coastline is one of the world’s longest and we have sea space that is more than six times larger than our land area.
‘The sea has always been important for Norway, and the sea will offer great opportunities for both jobs and growth in the economy in the future.’
He said that today some 214,000 people work in the marine sector which includes fish farming, conventional fishing, oil and marine related industries. It was an industry worth 500 billion kroners (almost £46 billion) a year.
‘Every year we provide billions for research and innovation in the marine industries, through programmes in the Research Council and Innovation Norway.’
Several ministries, including fisheries, are working together on the project. Oslo also hopes it will become a driving force for strong international cooperation in this area.
With this in mind, Norway’s prime minister, Erna Solberg (pictured), launched an international sea panel earlier this year. One of the priorities will be tackling marine pollution which is threatening conventional fishing.
The minister said the focus will be on: mapping opportunities for breeding new species and to facilitate harvesting of new species; mapping and monitoring the seabed; building environmentally friendly vessels; creating an international sea panel; combatting plastic and marine sewage; and fighting fishing related crime.

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