A mother ship from China with built in freezers, refrigerated sea water system, Chilled Water System, fuel and food storage facilities will arrive in the country before the end of the month.
According to Minister Rajitha Senaratne, around 95% of the work of the building of the ship has been completed. The vessel is being built in China at a cost of 160 million rupees. When it is deployed to conduct mother ship operations such as providing fuel, food, and other supplies to deep sea-based fishing fleet in the sea, it can have a major impact on fish production and prices.
Meanwhile the Minister has sent a Port Authority engineer to China to inspect the vessel.
The vessel built in China will be the first mother ship to be launched. At the same time the Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Ministry plans to introduce another to the fleet. The Minister said this would be manufactured by the Ceynor Foundation. A sum of 360 million rupees has been allocated for this task. Advantages of this vessel are that they will be able to cut the fuel costs by obtaining fuel from the mother ship at sea rather than having to return to land. The fishermen will be able to stay three to five months at sea at a stretch as they can get supplies of fuel and food to their boats at the sea, which means they can increase their fish collections by several fold.