Maputo — The United States government on Monday offered the Mozambican Defence Ministry a Maritime Automatic Identification System (AIS), making it possible to identify ships using the Mozambique Channel.
The equipment can identify the characteristics of the vessel, its registration number, speed, direction, the type of cargo on board, the port of departure and its declared destination.
The AIS is intended to provide more efficient control of maritime traffic.
It should assist in the fight against piracy, illegal immigration, illegal fishing and other violations of Mozambican waters.
Speaking at the delivery ceremony, Defence Minister Filipe Nyussi regarded the donation as a continuation and consolidation of the cooperation and friendship between Mozambique and the United States and particularly between the navies of the two countries.
"The technical military cooperation between the United States and the Mozambican navy, is of great importance since it strengthens the capacity of the Mozambican Armed Forces (FADM) by providing the ability for national maritime surveillance", he said.
Nyussi regarded the delivery of the system as a significant advance in the efforts to endow the FADM, and particularly the navy, with modern equipment, enabling it to comply fully with the missions entrusted to it.
"Mozambique is living in the era of information and knowledge which should lead effectively military operations in geographically scattered areas – in this case, along the length of the national coastline", he added.
Nyussi said the new system should stimulate still further cooperation between the Mozambican and American navies, and increase naval patrol activities along the Mozambican coast.
He urged the Mozambican navy to make the best use of the equipment and ensure that it is strictly and regularly maintained.