AUSTRALIA has provided marine oil spill response support to Sri Lanka following the sinking of the Singapore-flagged MV X-Press Pearlcontainership off the coast of Colombo in June.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority supplied more than three tonnes of spill response equipment to Sri Lanka, which was recently delivered through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

AMSA provided the equipment to Sri Lanka as part of a two-phase program that will enable the nation to prepare for, and respond to, current and future maritime disasters.

This first phase included sending shoreline response equipment, including two sets of shoreline protection boom and two sets of marine inflatable boom. Along with the equipment, AMSA arranged and supplied instruction and training videos about how the equipment can be safely and effectively deployed. 

AMSA executive director response Mark Morrow said, “As Indian Ocean neighbours, Australia and Sri Lanka are natural partners on environmental security and maritime disaster resilience in the Indo-Pacific.

“This pollution response equipment will help to minimise the impacts of this current maritime disaster and clean up on Sri Lanka’s marine environment and fisheries sector and help to bolster our region’s resilience and prosperity.

“For the medium to longer-term, AMSA and DFAT are also exploring ways to be able to provide advice on ways to improve Sri Lanka’s response to maritime disasters.”