António Costa among world leaders chosen for the first panel on sustainable ocean economy

  • ECO News
  • 25 September 2018

The High-Level Panel on Building a Sustainable Ocean Economy consists of 12 heads of state. During the next 18 months, a research will be commissioned by the Panel to address the Ocean crisis.

A group of world leaders, among which Portugal was represented, have met in New York with the aim of assessing the value of ocean goods and services in economic planning, it was announced on Tuesday.

“Co-chaired by the Prime Minister of Norway Erna Solberg and the President of the Republic of Palau Tommy Esang Remengesau Jr., the High-level Panel on Building a Sustainable Ocean Economy consists of 12 heads of government and the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for the Ocean [Peter Thomson],” said a statement jointly released by various bodies, including the World Resources Institute, after Monday’s meeting, on the eve of the 73rd General Assembly of the United Nations, also in New York.

“This marks the first time serving heads of government have joined forces on a global pace to protect the oceans,” it added.

The panel consists of leaders from Australia, Chile, Fiji, Ghana, Indonesia, Jamaica, Japan, Mexico, Namibia, Norway, the Republic of Palau and Portugal.

Representing Portugal at the meeting was its prime minister, António Costa, and the Marine Resources Minister, Ana Paula Vitorino.

“Over the next 18 months, the Panel will commission research on evidence-based solutions to the Ocean crisis and how to address it,” the statement went on. “This will include a series of ‘Blue Papers’ by global experts exploring issues such as sustainable fisheries, Ocean-based energy solutions and tourism, as well as new approaches to Marine Protected Areas and Ocean finance.

“The papers will include an action-oriented report, to be released in 2020,” it could be also read in the statement.

“We are dependent on a clean and healthy Ocean, and all use of marine resources must be sustainable,” said Solberg in his opening speech to the panel, cited in the same document. He argued that the panel of serving leaders has the ” the authority and determination needed to trigger and accelerate action for Ocean protection and production.

“We need to find common solutions – to develop and implement comprehensive, effective regulation and an integrated Ocean management regime,” he argued. “This is truly a test of our ability to deliver a healthier planet and Ocean to the next generation.”

The panel’s co-chair, Esang Remengesau, Jr., stressed that humanity “must learn the lessons of small islands and respect our Ocean, or we risk losing many of its gifts for good.”

The panel members are also to cooperate to achieve sustainable development objectives laid down by the UN.

Portugal getting valued as a great partner for Ocean Economy investors

Earlier this year, San Diego’s BlueTech Cluster organized a business trade trip to Portugal, envisioning new partnerships and business ideas for future investment, in the area of Sea Economy.

In Portugal, Fundação Oceano Azul and Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian decided to invest over a million euros in projects connected to the blue biotechnology.

Blue biotechnology is concerned with the exploration and exploitation of the resulting diverse marine organisms in order to develop new products, according to the European Commission.

Source: Lusa/ ECO