Ocean resources play critical role in sustainable development worldwide – Annan

26 May 2004

Ocean resources are vital for sustainable development and “the diligent and inspiring work” of the International Seabed Authority proves “multilateral approaches to global challenges can be effective, equitable and enduring,” United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan has told the body’s 10th anniversary meeting.

Ocean resources are vital for sustainable development and “the diligent and inspiring work” of the International Seabed Authority proves “multilateral approaches to global challenges can be effective, equitable and enduring,” United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan has told the body’s 10th anniversary meeting.

The Authority, an autonomous international organization set up under the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, is entrusted with organizing and controlling all mineral-related activities in the international seabed area beyond national jurisdiction, an area designated as the common heritage of mankind.

The Authority “has played a key role” in guiding state behaviour, managing the diverse challenges associated with ocean space and its uses, and settling the disputes that inevitably arise, Mr. Annan said in a message delivered by Assistant Secretary General for Legal Affairs Ralph Zacklin to the meeting in Kingston, Jamaica. The two-week long session opened on Monday.

The Authority was established on 16 November 1994 following the entry into force of the Convention on the Law of the Sea. All parties to the Convention are automatically members of the Authority, now numbering 145 – up from 143 at the last session in 2003. The newest parties are Canada and Lithuania.

 

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