In the second day of the session on 16 August 2022, Delegates met in two parallel informal-informal consultations throughout the day to address draft treaty related to capacity building and the transfer of marine technology (CB&TT); measures such as area-based management tools (ABMTs), including marine protected areas (MPAs);
Environmental impact assessments (EIAs); and marine genetic resources (MGRs) including questions on the sharing of benefits.
Second day saw mixed progress.
While delegates addressing Capacity Building and Technology Transfer seemed to make headway on whittling some of the options and proposals tabled, other groups engaged in basic definitional questions, said a recent Ministry of foreign Affairs, Bangladesh.
In a long-drawn discussion, delegates considered whether to distinguish between area-based management tools (ABMTs) and marine protected areas (MPAs), or to include MPAs under ABMTs, exasperating some delegations. Delegates returned to well-worn arguments in their discussions on the fair and equitable sharing of benefits accrued from marine genetic resources (MGRs).
Some delegations hesitant to include monetary benefits in the new treaty, noted that little value currently flows from utilization of MGRs from the High Seas. Delegates also engaged in fundamental discussions about environmental impact assessments (EIAs) and whether EIAs from other competent international framework or body (IFBs) should be accepted as equivalent.
In the third day of the session on 17 August 2022, Delegates met in a brief stocktaking plenary in the morning, and then in informal-informal discussions throughout the day and into the evening on capacity building and the transfer of marine technology (CB&TT); measures such as area-based management tools (ABMTs), including marine protected areas (MPAs); environmental impact assessments (EIAs); and cross-cutting issues, including institutional arrangements and general provisions.
In addressing the modalities for capacity building and the transfer of marine technology (CB&TT), the lines were drawn on how to address the transfer of marine technology.
While some cautioned against any provisions that might force the private sector to do anything, others underlined that this would be necessary for the implementation of this new agreement. Elsewhere, some were hesitant to agree to any institutional arrangements at all, which could jeopardize the entire agreement.
Secretary, Maritime Affairs Unit of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Rear Admiral Md Khurshed Alam (Retd.) called on Chair of the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) H.E. Mr. Adnan Rashid Nasser Al-Azri at his office on 17 August 2022.
Secretary Alam was accompanied by the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Bangladesh to the United Nations Muhammad Abdul Muhith and other officials from the Mission and Ministry. The Chair and the Secretary, Maritime Affairs Unit discussed issues of Bangladesh’s amended submission to the CLCS.
Secretary Alam reiterated that the final recommendation of the United Nations would provide a basis for the exploration, conservation and development of living and non-living natural resources that would help ensure our sustainable development, energy needs and the prosperity of our people.
It may be mentioned here that based on the binding verdicts of the international tribunals, the Government of Bangladesh review its submission and lodged a fresh version to the Commission on 22 October 2020. In the amended submission, delimitation lines prescribed by the Tribunals were used to determine the limits of Bangladesh’s Continental Shelf.