Briefing Note
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Briefing Note
8 February
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Third Meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Informal Working Group to Study Issues Relating to the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Marine Biological Diversity Beyond Areas of National Jurisdiction

1-5 February 2010 | UN Headquarters, New York, United States of America

New York

Third Meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Informal Working Group to Study Issues Relating to the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Marine Biological Diversity Beyond Areas of National Jurisdiction

The third meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Informal Working Group to study issues relating to the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction (hereinafter, the Working Group) convened from 1-5 February 2010 at UN Headquarters in New York. In accordance with Resolution 59/24 whereby the General Assembly established the Working Group and Resolution 63/111 by which the Assembly decided to reconvene the Working Group for the third time, the meeting examined the scientific, technical, economic, legal, environmental, socio-economic and other aspects of the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction, including activities of the United Nations and other relevant international organizations. Participants discussed possible options and approaches to promote international cooperation and coordination for the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ), as well as key issues and questions for more detailed background studies. For the first time, the Working Group was asked to provide recommendations to the General Assembly. In accordance with General Assembly Resolution 64/71 of 4 December 2009, the third meeting was mandated in particular to continue discussions of the legal regime on marine genetic resources, as well as marine protected areas and environmental impact assessment processes in areas beyond national jurisdiction.

The meeting was attended by over 200 participants, including national delegations, intergovernmental organizations and non-governmental organizations. Delegates delivered general statements on Monday, and engaged in discussions of possible options and approaches to promote international cooperation and coordination for the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in ABNJ, as well as key issues and questions for more detailed background studies, from Tuesday to Thursday. Draft recommendations to the General Assembly, prepared by the Group of Friends of the Co-Chairs, were considered in plenary on Thursday and Friday. Delegates eventually agreed by consensus to a package of recommendations to the General Assembly, that although largely considered not ambitious or reflective of the constructive proposals made during the week, was accepted as the only possible outcome at this point in time. One of the recommendations calls for reconvening the Working Group in 2011.

This briefing note summarizes the discussions and the recommendations adopted by the Working Group, and is arranged according to the agenda....More information 

View of the plenary

Delegates consult informally


Co-chairs Lijnzaad and Kohona consult with delegates

Delegates listening to Co-Chair Lijnzaad’s proposals

Related Links

UN Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea resources
Meeting website
Provisional agenda
Draft format and draft annotated provisional agenda and organization of work

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