Crown Prince Haakon of Norway has visited the research vessel “Dr. Fritjof Nansen” and opened the ocean conference “The Ocean” in Bergen. The ocean conference brings together participants from the maritime industries, research and academia and is being held for the third time.
Participants followed the presentations on sustainable marine economy and new opportunities from the ocean both physically and digitally. The conference continues for several days, although the Crown Prince will not attend more than one day.
Crown Prince Haakon highlighted three main points in his opening speech in the Grieg Hall: that the sea binds us together, that everyone depends on the sea and that the maritime is full of opportunities. His Royal Highness said: “The ocean connects us – to each other, to nature and to ourselves. For thousands of years, we have been travelling on the ocean. That has been the way be have been able to connect with other human beings far away from us. It has been a way of discovering the world”.
During his short stay in western Norway Crown Prince Haakon visited the research vessel “Dr. Fritjof Nansen”, which is located at the quay at Nykirkekaien in Bergen city. The Crown Prince met the crew on the aft deck and talked about their impending cruise. Through the Nansen program, the vessel assists developing countries in developing responsible fisheries management. «Dr. Fritjof Nansen »is on its way to cruises in sea and coastal areas in Africa and Asia to collect physical and biological information.
In March 2020, the research vessel returned to Norway due to the coronavirus pandemic, but is again ready for travel. Crown Prince Haakon wished the crew a good trip. The Nansen program is a collaboration between NORAD, the United Nations organization for nutrition and agriculture and the Royal Norwegian Institute of Marine Research.
The program has existed since 1975 and is the largest and longest-running single project in Norwegian fisheries assistance. In 2017, a new phase of the Nansen program began with a new and larger research vessel – the third «Dr. Fridtjof Nansen »in a row. It has increased laboratory facilities and room for more researchers on board than its predecessors. In 2012, the Crown Prince and Crown Princess visited the ship “Dr. Fritjof Nansen” in Ghana.