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Ramsar COP9 9th Conference of the Parties to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands
Kampala, Uganda | 8-15 November 2005
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Ramsar COP9 Opens in Kampala, Uganda

The Ninth Meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties (COP9) to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands opened in the evening of Tuesday, 8 November 2005, and will continue until 15 November 2005 at the Speke Resort Munyonyo in Kampala, Uganda. The theme of the Conference is "Wetlands and water: supporting life, sustaining livelihoods."

The opening session concluded with the presentation of the triennial Ramsar Wetland Conservation Awards. The award for education was shared between the Wetlands Centre, Australia (accepted by Christine Prietto, Education Manager) and Reiko Nakamura, Ramsar Centre, Japan, while the awards for science and management were received respectively by Shuming Cai, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China, and SH. A. Nezami Baloochi, Department of Environment, Province of Gilan, Iran. Above: the award recipients, in the order named.


Tuesday, 8 November
Opening Session


Antonio Fernandez de Tejada, Spain, passed the Ramsar flag to Uganda, and commended the Government of Uganda for hosting Africa's first Ramsar COP.

Kahinda Otafiire, Minister of Lands, Water and the Environment, Uganda, outlined its progress toward conservation and sustainable use of wetlands.

Peter Bridgewater, Secretary General, Ramsar Convention, stressed the need to balance the desire to designate more Ramsar sites with the need to ensure their representativeness and effective management.

Bakary Kante, Director, Division of Environmental Conventions, UNEP, highlighted enhanced cooperation with Ramsar, the contribution of wetlands to poverty reduction, disaster prevention and mitigation, and opportunites created by market approaches to ecosystem services.

On behalf of Ramsar's International Organization Partners (IOP), World Conservation Union (IUCN) Director General Achim Steiner called for greater coherence among multilateral environmental agreements and broader stakeholder engagement.

A representative of civil society reported on outcomes from the Civil Society Forum held on 4 November 2005, and proposed the development of legally binding mechanisms to hold Parties responsible for arrears in annual dues payments.

Speaking on behalf of donor countries, Kathelyne Craenen, Belgium, requested that wetlands be put on national and international investment agendas.

Youth representatives presented their concerns and proposals, asking delegates to ensure information is easy to understand and to remember that youth will be impacted by their decisions.

Emphasizing the importance of "non-bottled water," Philippe Jacob, Secretary General, Danone Group, presented the triennial Ramsar Wetland Conservation Awards.
Around COP9

After the opening session, participants gathered for cocktails at the Speke Resort marina on the shores of Lake Victoria.

Related Links

Ramsar Convention
Convention on Biological Diversity
Convention to Combat Desertification
Convention on Migratory Species
IUCN - The World Conservation Union
Wetlands International
WWF International
BirdLife International

Related ENB/Sustainable Developments Coverage

Linkages Water, Wetlands, Oceans and Coasts page
ENB Coverage of Ramsar COP-8
ENB Coverage of Ramsar COP-7
Sustainable Developments coverage of the 3rd World Water Forum
Sustainable Developments coverage of the Stakeholder Dialogue on Sustainable Water Management Sustainable Developments coverage of the International Conference on Freshwater

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