VICTORIA, Seychelles – In a ceremony to mark World Ocean Day yesterday (8th June), Seychelles President James Alix Michel launched a new book entitled, Rethinking the Ocean – Towards the Blue Economy.
The ceremony took place at State House and was attended by among others Seychelles founding President Sir James R. Mancham, KBE, various Ministers and members of the diplomatic corps, as well as representatives from the private and public sectors.
In his remarks President Michel said: “In Rethinking the Oceans, I have endeavoured to urge us all to think afresh about what lies beyond our shores and the sub-title ‘Towards the Blue Economy’ shows ways in which this can be done.”
“My book tells the story of the Blue Economy to date; how the concept has come onto the world stage, the many aspects it embraces, and what it can offer for all of our future and running through this is the theme of sustainability. We must learn from the errors we have made in the past; we must ensure that the beauty and the riches of the oceans are there for the benefit of the future generations,” President Michel said.
President Michel expressed his gratitude to all those who collaborated with him on this project and a special mention went to Dr. José Grazianio da Silva, Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), Sir James R. Mancham, KBE, Seychelles founding President and Dr. Gordon L. Anderson, the President of Paragon House Publications, Minnesota, USA.
Paragon House Publications has previously published 3 books by founding President Mancham (i) War on America – Seen from the Indian Ocean (2002) (ii) Autobiography – Seychelles Global Citizen (2009) and (iii) SEYCHELLES – The saga of a small nation navigating the cross-currents of a big world (2014).
“The decision of Paragon House Publications to publish President Michel’s book is certainly an acknowledgement that this book is a serious book of international appeal and that it is timely for it to be put into the international domain,” said Sir James.
The founding President expressed a special congratulation to President Michel, who, “despite all current difficulties and problems,” still found the time to write and to promote Seychelles in a manner which we deserve as being the pioneer in the field of the Blue Economy. Sir James said that this book will be an eye opener and that everyone should read it.
The President of Paragon House Publications, Dr. Anderson, who is also Editor-in-Chief of International Journal on World Peace, said: “Rethinking the Ocean is a book of hope and optimism, demonstrating that a clean and sustainable world does not need to remain an elusive dream but that if we apply our minds and hearts to sound Blue Economy policies, we can indeed turn around the dangers of environmental catastrophy caused by human ignorance, abuse and neglect of the ocean. This is a book written by a mature statesman who rises above the fray and points the way forward,” he said.
Speaking about the Blue Economy concept, Seychelles Minister of Finance, Trade and the Blue Economy, Jean-Paul Adam, highlighted the achievements made since President Michel created the Blue Economy Department over the years. “Through the launching of this book, the President shows us yet again his commitment to implementing a transformative vision for Seychelles. An insightful book which will offer food for thought for those of us who not only want to protect it, but also wish to see it contribute even more towards our socio-economic development,” the Minister said.
Minister Adam also spoke of the various finance mechanisms and projects being spearheaded by Seychelles to support the Blue Economy.