Seychelles’ President calls for international community support for swift ratification of High Seas Treaty

Seychelles' President calls for international community support for swift ratification of High Seas Treaty
Seychelles' President calls for international community support for swift ratification of High Seas Treaty

Africa-Press – Cape verde. Seychelles’ President Wavel Ramkalawan said the primary task before the international community would be to support the swift ratification and domestication of the High Seas Treaty and simultaneously advocate for its entry into force among at least 60 states.

According to State House on Tuesday, Ramkalawan made the statement during his intervention at the High Ambition and Partnerships for the High Seas on the sidelines of the Our Ocean Conference taking place in Athens, Greece.

The BBNJ Treaty, known as the High Seas Treaty, is an international agreement that aims to preserve and sustainably use the marine iodiversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction. This includes the high seas, which are outside of countries’ exclusive economic zones, and make up nearly half of the Earth’s surface

The Seychelles’ National Assembly ratified the Treaty on March 13.

Ramkalawan said, “The adoption of the BBNJ Agreement rekindles hope for a healthy ocean, planet, and human life. The Agreement which balances the protection of marine biodiversity with opportunities for scientific discovery and sustainable development, signifies an advancement in global collaboration and exemplifies our collaborative effort for the well-being of the entire globe.”

He added that it expresses a common vision for a future “in which our ocean’s biodiversity is valued, protected, and used sustainably for the benefit of current and future generations.”

Ramkalawan said the entry into force of the treaty will also accelerate the accomplishment of many other Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), playing a vital role in climate regulation, food security and nutrition, peace and justice and many more.

“The race for the ratification of the BBNJ Treaty is the perfect example of how, by working together around the world, we can accelerate action to deliver the SDGs. At this point, Seychelles and other developing countries require capacity-building assistance to develop domestic processes that will enable the treaty’s rapid implementation,” he added.

Ramkalawan said that for Seychelles, the aims and components of the BBNJ treaty are of critical importance as they are seen as a national priority to secure ocean sustainability for humanity.

“For the people of Seychelles, the BBNJ Agreement means an opportunity for our young scientists to get involved in research projects, and access samples, databases, repositories, and digital sequence information. It is another step forward in the establishment of a comprehensive system and well-connected networks of marine protected areas, and we now have a mechanism that is more equitable in which everyone can benefit from what is called the ‘common heritage of mankind,” he added.

He concluded in saying that the agreement is in the world’s interest “but effective implementation will determine its real impact on oceans, people, and the planet. It is my sincere hope that we maintain the positive momentum for the Agreement’s implementation as soon as possible for the vast, interconnected ecosystem that is our global ocean.”

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