British High Commissioner to Cyprus, Irfan Siddiq expressed his country’s readiness to deepen its cooperation with Cyprus in the maritime and marine sectors.
He was speaking after a visit to the Cyprus Marine Maritime Institute on Wednesday on the occasion of the CMMI’s cooperation with the Southampton Maritime Institute.
In his remarks, he praised the CMMI, noting “it's an exciting and innovative body that's clearly focusing on really important areas such as decarbonization of the shipping industry, marine conservation.”
These are also huge priorities for the UK, he said, adding the UK has a lot of expertise in the field and that’s clearly evident in the way that the Institute has really set up links with the Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute.
These links, he said, “are really important for us, because we want to encourage cooperation and development in these sectors. I think it's a real opportunity for us to deepen our cooperation in this area, but also to show the priority of these fields, particularly the green agenda and conservation.”
The British High Commissioner said that given that after the UK’s exit from the European Union, there have been some new barriers to educational opportunities for Cypriot students in the UK, they are “thinking about ways that we can create new links between UK education institutions and bodies in Cyprus to continue to offer those opportunities, which is hugely valuable and important.”
He said the work done at the CMMI “in some ways, is even more advanced than in the UK, particularly in the links between industry and academia, and commercialization of all the research and innovation, and we are so keen to support this and support this area of UK- Cypriot cooperation and achievement.”
On his part, Zacharias Siokouros, CEO of the Institute, said that they have close cooperation with the High Commission as the Southampton Maritime Institute is one of the founding partners of the CMMI.
He said both institutes work very closely and “we look forward to this relationship with the British High Commission to Cyprus continuing further because there are many areas where Britain is active in marine and maritime matters and there are many opportunities for Cyprus as well."
Siokouros said during a meeting recently in Southampton between the Mayor of Larnaca and his British counterpart, they agreed to closer cooperation between the two cities.
Asked whether there are any plans for the CMMI to cooperate with other Universities and research centers in Britain, Siokouros said that "there is a program currently running with several partners from England."
"We look forward to continuing and strengthening this cooperation,” he added.