The High Seas Alliance welcomes the release of draft text of an agreement under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (“Draft Text”)(1), and congratulates the President of the Intergovernmental Conference, Ambassador Rena Lee, on this achievement.
The following statements were delivered on behalf of the High Seas Alliance.
A new stage of text-based negotiations for IGC3:
With the third Intergovernmental Conference (IGC3) session on a new international legally binding instrument under UNCLOS for the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ) taking place from 19-30 August at UN Headquarters, we consider how far we have come (the first UN ad hoc open-ended working group on BBNJ convened in 2006), with an eye to the roadmap needed ahead so that the IGC can successfully conclude its work in 2020 with the adoption of a new ocean treaty that results in real legal protection for marine life in the High Seas.
As negotiations progress for a new international legally binding instrument (‘Instrument’) on the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ), the relationship of this new BBNJ Instrument to existing regional and sectoral organizations remains a point of intense debate. The new Instrument presents an opportunity to enhance the effectiveness of existing relevant legal instruments and organizations and bring forward a more coherent and comprehensive approach to the protection and conservation of marine biodiversity in the high seas.