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COBSEA Strategic Directions 2018-2022


Report of the Special Intergovernmental Session of COBSEA, Putrajaya, Malaysia, 5-6 September 2007 (read..., pdf-file, 249 KB)

Report of the Nineteenth Meeting of COBSEA, Siem Reap, Cambodia, 22-23 January 2008 (read..., pdf-file, 814 KB)

The New Strategic Direction for COBSEA (2008-2012) (read..., pdf-file, 3.8MB)

COBSEA Strategic Directions 2018-2022 (read... pdf-file, 586 KB)

COBSEA Strategic Directions 2018-2022 were adopted at the Second Extraordinary Intergovernmental Meeting of COBSEA, held in Bangkok, Thailand from 25-26 April 2018.

The purpose of the COBSEA Strategic Directions 2018-2022 is to guide COBSEA participating countries and the COBSEA Secretariat in action towards development and protection of the marine environment and coastal areas of East Asian Seas, leveraging COBSEA as an intergovernmental policy mechanism towards planning, implementation and tracking of delivery of ocean-related Sustainable Development Goals, in line with the global “Regional Seas Directions 2017-2020”.

The Strategic Directions encompass two substantive themes: Land-based marine pollution, and Marine and coastal planning and management, as well as an over-arching Governance theme. The substantive themes identify priority issues relevant to the region’s marine and coastal environment and sustainable development, where COBSEA has a particular mandate or comparative advantage to catalyse and deliver policy development, projects and other activities. The governance theme addresses COBSEA as a regional policy mechanism and identifies priorities in creating the necessary conditions for COBSEA and its Secretariat to efficiently deliver their mandates.

In addressing land-based marine pollution, COBSEA will focus on nutrients, sediment and wastewater, as well as marine litter and micro-plastics. This includes revision of the COBSEA Regional Action Plan on Marine Litter 2008, the only intergovernmentally adopted framework for addressing marine litter in the region, as well as project development to support implementation of its provisions.

In relation to marine and coastal planning and management, COBSEA will emphazise ecosystem-based approaches including marine protected areas and marine spatial planning towards achievement of relevant SDGs and Aichi Targets. This includes establishing a network of marine protected areas, increasing conservation of marine and coastal area to 10%, and building capacity. 

In implementing these Strategic Directions, COBSEA will seek enhanced collaboration and synergies with relevant regional organizations. Efforts will also be made to broaden and diversify sources of funding for implementation.

The COBSEA Strategic Directions 2018-2022 were developed on request by the 22nd Intergovernmental Meeting of COBSEA. The process has included consultation with COBSEA Focal Points, national experts, UN Environment staff, representatives from regional projects and programmes, and donors. Supporting information was gleaned from reports, the independent review of the East Asian Seas Action Plan carried out in 2004; reports and evaluations of COBSEA-implemented projects from the past ten years; as well as strategies of UN Environment-administered Regional Seas Programmes, Regional Seas Strategic Directions 2017-2020, relevant UN Environment Assembly Resolutions, and relevant UN Environment strategic documents including the Programme of Work 2014-2017 and 2018-2021. Draft Strategic Directions were discussed at the 23rd Intergovernmental Meeting of COBSEA in February 2017, based on which a revised draft was prepared for national consultation and review, and a workshop was convened in Bangkok, Thailand on 9 September 2017 for finalization.



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