The Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs and the Office of the Minister of State for Marine Affairs welcome the progress made over the last two weeks during the fifth session of intergovernmental negotiations on a treaty on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (known as the “BBNJ” process), held at United Nations headquarters in New York.
This essential progress for the conclusion of the treaty mainly addresses the creation of marine protected areas, the completion of environmental impact studies in the high seas and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits from the use of marine genetic resources.
A few months from COP15 in Montreal which will set a legal framework for biodiversity, France is reaffirming its determination to mobilize the international community to protect the ocean and its biodiversity and enable its resources to be fairly shared. This was the priority set by the President of the French Republic, reflected in the One Ocean Summit organized in Brest in February.
In this Year of the Oceans, which marks the 40th anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, the international community must redouble its efforts to reach an agreement. With its EU partners and the “Protecting the ocean, time for action” coalition which it has initiated, France will continue to work so that an ambitious and universal treaty can be agreed in a few short months, which will strengthen governance of the high seas and create the necessary tools for the effective protection of the ocean and sustainable use of its resources.
Building on this commitment, France will actively defend its candidacy, which was submitted with Costa Rica, to host the next UN Ocean Conference in 2025.