|Statement on Marine Biological Diversity|
|Wednesday, 03 February 2010 13:59|
Statement by Delegation of Sri Lanka,
My Delegation wishes to congratulate the Co Chairs of the Working Group, Ms. Lispeth Lijhnstead (Netherlands) and Ambassador Palitha Kohona, (Sri Lanka) on their appointment and to extend our appreciation to them for undertaking to guide our deliberations in formulating viable and generally acceptable recommendations to be provided to the General Assembly at its 65th Session. We would also express appreciation to the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea of the OLA for the report of the SG in document A/64/66/Add 2 and for its support in preparing for and servicing this meeting.
Distinguished Co Chairs,
It is accepted that there needs to be an integrated, cooperative and coordinated approach to managing the marine environment and this applies to marine biodiversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction.
There needs to be a better understanding of the technical, environmental, socioeconomic and legal aspects related to marine genetic resources in areas beyond national jurisdiction. To this end developing country participation requires the availability of scientific data to them.
Sri Lanka considers the participation of the International Seabed Authority as being vital to the development of a conservation and management regime, given its mandate under the Law of the Sea Convention, in particular in Article 143 and 145 thereof.
As regards the sustainable development of high seas fisheries Sri Lanka recognizes a clear and yet unfulfilled need to establish a regional fisheries management organization with wider species regulation and with competence to exercise effective regulatory approaches for the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in its neighboring high seas. In the national context, important biological resources beyond areas of national jurisdiction includes migratory species such as tuna, billfish, migratory sharks and mammals.
Sri Lanka continues working on the issue of conservation of migratory sharks and has consented to an agreement being developed under article 3, 4 & 5 of the Conservation of Migratory Species (CMS). This would add value to current global shark conservation and management efforts. It is now in the process of preparing a management plan for conservation and management of shark species found in Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka has launched a programme for regulation of commercial marine mammal watching, particularly of whales and dolphins. Regulations have already been drafted for marine mammal viewing which occurs off the coasts all around the country. These were drafted in view of the need for special conservation measures for marine mammals and sustainable development of the resources for the benefit of the tourist industry.
A Turtle Conservation Project (TCP) has been established in Sri Lanka as an independent NGO to device and facilitate the implementation of sustainable marine turtle conservation strategy through education, research and community participation.
Sri Lanka is committed to multilateral collaborative approaches to development and implementation for the exploitation and sustainable utilization of biological resources.
Co Chairs, distinguished delegates, my delegation will extend its fullest cooperation to you and to this process and is confident that mutual accommodation will be the key to our success and that the views of all concerned delegations will be reflected in the conclusions to be presented to the General Assembly, and that particular consideration will be given to the concerns of small developing states.
I thank you.