Fifth Meeting of the Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea 
United Nations Headquarters, New York | 7- 11 June 2004

 

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 Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB)

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 Summary

 
 
 

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The fifth meeting of the United Nations Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea (the Consultative Process or UNICPOLOS) will convene from 7-11 June 2004 at the headquarters of the United Nations, in New York. The meeting will be held immediately prior to the fourteenth Meeting of States Parties to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, to be held from 14-18 June.     

With resolution 54/33 (A/RES/54/33) of 24 November 1999, the General Assembly established the Open-ended Informal Consultative Process in order to facilitate the annual review of developments in ocean affairs. The General Assembly decided that the Consultative Process would consider the Secretary-General’s annual reports on oceans and the law of the sea, and suggest particular issues to be considered by the General Assembly, with an emphasis on identifying areas where intergovernmental and inter-agency coordination and cooperation should be enhanced. The resolution further decided that the General Assembly would, at its 57th session, review the effectiveness and utility of the Consultative Process. General Assembly resolution 57/141 (A/RES/57/141) of 12 December 2002 extends the Consultative Process for an additional three years, with the aim of reviewing its effectiveness and utility at the 60th session of the General Assembly.

The fifth meeting of the Consultative Process will focus on new sustainable uses of the oceans, including the conservation and management of biodiversity of the seabed in areas beyond national jurisdiction. In addition, the meeting will consider issues related to cooperation and coordination on ocean and coastal matters, as well as provide a forum for identifying areas of concern and actions needed, and issues for further consideration. The recommendations adopted by UNICPOLOS-5 will be forwarded to the 59th session of the General Assembly.

In resolution 58/240 of 23 December 2003, the General Assembly recommended that time be allocated during the fifth meeting of the Consultative Process to convene an international workshop to consider a regular process for global reporting and assessment of the state of the marine environment, including socio-economic aspects (GMA). This responds to paragraph 36 (b) of the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation stemming from the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development, which requests establishing “by 2004 a regular process under the United Nations for global reporting and assessment of the state of the marine environment, including socio-economic aspects, both current and foreseeable, building on existing regional assessments.”   

The GMA International Workshop will thus consider and review a draft document, prepared by a group of experts in March 2004, and setting out, inter alia, the scope, general framework and outline of the process. The revised document will be presented for adoption at an intergovernmental meeting in Reykjavik, Iceland.
 



Related Links |

Earth Negotiation Bulletin's report of UNICPOLOS-4 (HTML, PDF, TXT).
Sustainable Developments’ report of the Global Conference on Oceans, Coasts and Islands (HTML, PDF, TXT).
UNICPOLOS site.
UN Division for Oceans Affairs and the Law of the Sea (UNDOALOS) .
GMA International Workshop site.
Johannesburg Plan of Implementation.
Report of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) - Chapter 17.



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