Highlights and images for 20 August 2019


Highlights for Tuesday, 20 August 2019

Nurse shark from Mexico. Photo by Marcelo Halpern

The third session of the Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) on an international legally binding instrument (ILBI) under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ) convened in New York on Tuesday, with delegates meeting in an open informal working group, as well as behind closed doors in two “informal-informals.”

During the informal working group, they discussed capacity building and the transfer of marine technology (CB&TT), focusing on specific aspects related to the objectives of CB&TT, cooperation, and modalities.

Highlights of the day include:

  • Informal-informals on the modalities for CB&TT, including whether it will be voluntary or mandatory in nature;
  • Informal-informals on area-based management tools (ABMTs), including aspects related to decision-making, such as the establishment of ABMTs and their relationship with relevant existing instruments; and
  • Discussions in plenary on the objectives of and cooperation under CB&TT.
  • In the afternoon, IGC President Lee offered a brief summary of the informal-informals held during the morning, focusing on CB&TT modalities.
    She highlighted, inter alia, that participants had: expressed diverging views in favor of CB&TT being provided on a voluntary or mandatory basis; elaborated on the circumstances under which CB&TT would be voluntary and mandatory, respectively; and exchanged opinions about “what we are trying to achieve here” and whether the new treaty should reflect “what is in UNCLOS” or go beyond the Convention.

    In the corridors, some delegates found the new format refreshing while others expressed concerns about the new closed-door negotiating modalities, noting that, “Limiting participation at a time where transparency and public engagement have become a central tenet across the global political spectrum does not seem to be a step in the right direction.” For more details on the day’s negotiations and to hear what delegates said in the corridors, see our daily Earth Negotiations Bulletin.

    IISD Reporting Services, through its ENB Meeting Coverage, has provided daily web coverage, daily reports, and a summary and analysis report from BBNJ IGC-3. The summary and analysis report is now available in HTML and PDF.

    Photos by IISD/ENB | Francis Dejon

    For photo reprint permissions, please follow instructions at our Attribution Regulations for Meeting Photo Usage Page.

    Photos in the corridors
    Informal Working Group
    IGC President Rena Lee, Singapore, convenes the IGC informal working group on CB&TT
    L-R: Miguel de Serpa Soares, Secretary-General of the IGC, Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs and UN Legal Counsel; IGC President Rena Lee, Singapore; and Gabriele Goettsche-Wanli, Director, UN Division of Ocean Affairs and Law of the Sea (UNDOALOS)
    Teresa Cruz Sardiñas, Cuba
    Marc Richir, EU
    Yolannie Cerrato, Honduras
    Katie Hamilton, Australia
    Ali Nasimfar, Iran
    Amanda Richards, New Zealand
    Fakasoa Tealei, Tuvalu
    Elizabeth Kim, US
    Babajide Alo, Nigeria
    Fuad Bateh, Palestine, on behalf of the G-77/China
    Sergey Leonidchenko, Russian Federation
    Huang Yingni, China
    Members of the High Seas Alliance in consultation