Holy See, September 13th: ABMTs and MPAs – Informal Working Group

Significant challenges on implementation and monitoring of ABMTs in ABNJ, geographic boundaries are far, ever changing currents, human activities must be monitored, along with the biodiversity.

MPAs requires VME and non cooperative technologies, drones….other options. In addition to manpower to monitoring and enforcement. Actions by sectoral and regional organizations have capacity issues, they are fragmented and cannot fill in the gaps. Activities could also be under-regulated or with no capacity to enforce.

Geographic, technological and financial challenges. 4 suggestions:

1) Economic tools must be carefully considered. These economic tools are easier to apply because the impact on users is immediate. Include fees and charges (entrance), taxes, licensing, etc. insurance, penalties on non-compliance. Economic tools could be broad in relation to ABMTs, targeted in scope to MPAs for example, could provide source of funding.  Practical reality that economic tools are more effective to prevent than physical enforcement after the fact happens. Carefully tailored for conservation purposes. Easier to design and implement.

2) Provision on due diligence.

3) Cross-cutting issues: including due diligence obligations with respect to compliance.

4) Address the jurisdictional gaps on commercial activities in ABNJ in ABMTs, in respect to non compliance, scope of responsibility must be shared by a broader group of countries. We suggest the inclusion of States that have jurisdiction over commercial activities in ABNJ.

UNTV link to Statement from Holy See, September 13th