The main focus of discussion today was the process for the designation of ABMTs including MPAs, with the majority supporting actually having a process, which is a good start.
There was a fair amount of recognition for the importance of a transparent, inclusive, time-bound consultation process including all stakeholders.
Many states agreed that state parties should be sponsoring the proposals with some speaking in support of the role of civil society and other stakeholders.
The majority supported a scientific review of the proposal and there was also discussion about the decision-making process, where both global and regional approaches were discussed.
There was considerable discussion about whether or not there should be different approaches for ABMTs and MPAs.
A few states voiced support for regional and sectoral bodies leading the process, in other words the status quo. In our intervention we made it clear that this approach would not be suitable.
The HSA was pleased to see strong support for a functional decision-making process that doesn’t allow for a single state to block and there was also support for not having time bound designations for MPAs but rather for conservation measures to be reviewed. A few states called for consensus requirements, and HSA explained why voting is important to be able to reach effective decisions, but this will be discussed later as a cross-cutting matter.
We heard a good exchange of views, the elaboration of state positions and some ideas for merging text.
The discussion on cooperation and coordination with other existing instruments, legal bodies and frameworks began towards the end of the day and will be continued tomorrow.