Japan trains Sri Lanka Coast Guard | Daily News


Japan trains Sri Lanka Coast Guard

A member from the Japanese Coast Guard (JCG) team conducting a training session for Sri Lankan Coast Guard(SLCG) officials.
A member from the Japanese Coast Guard (JCG) team conducting a training session for Sri Lankan Coast Guard(SLCG) officials.

An expert team of five Japan Coast Guard (JCG) officials including two National Strike Team members specialized for combating oil spill incidents and two Mobile Cooperation Team members specialized for the capacity development in Japan was dispatched to Sri Lanka for the period from February 18 to February 27 to conduct technical transfers to Sri Lanka Coast Guard (SLCG) officials on advance oil spill incident management techniques, the “Japan International Cooperation Agenc"(JICA)issuing a media communiqué said.

With the rapid development of the shipping industry especially transportation of petroleum, accidental oil spillages has become one of the human problems and biggest threats to marine ecosystems. Statistics shows that approximately twenty-five per cent of world’s oil is transported using Sri Lanka’s nearby International Logistic Sea Lane. Besides, oil spills have wide-ranging impacts that are often portrayed as long lasting environmental disasters.

Being the fifth training programme of its kind conducted for SLCG since the cooperation started in 2015, the programme involved basic to advance skills especially on oil response and safe handling of crude-oil-generated flammable/venomous gases that leads to secondary disasters. Following tabletop learning on Japan`s safety standards, by using protection equipment including gas detectors, a stimulated oil spill drill at open sea near Galle was conducted consuming water disposable markers substituting an actual oil spill. Japanese designed and built 30 meter two fast patrol vessels and oil spill combat equipment granted through JICA was utilized in the training, where 62 SLCG officers participated, and in total more than 200 SLCG officers are to receive training under a six year JICA technical cooperation ending in 2021.

“JICA plans to continue its support to Sri Lanka Coast Guard in enhancing maritime cooperation activities between both countries. We hope SLCG will make appropriate arrangements to properly sustain these techniques even after JICA and JCG phase-out from the programme”, said Fusato Tanaka, Chief Representative of JICA Sri Lanka.

A closing ceremony hosted by Director General of SLCG Rear Admiral Wimalathunge was held on February 28 in Mirissa SLCG Headquarters to handover certificates to participants of the above training followed by an evaluation session on the training outcomes. Representatives from Embassy of Japan, Japan Coast Guard and JICA attended the ceremony.

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