Logo ocean conf EnCo-organizers: The Republic of Portugal, the Republic of France, the European Commission and the High Seas Alliance

Date: June 30th

Time: 17h30 to 18h45

Location: Committee Room

To download the Invitationclick here

For the full programme of the event, click here



The conclusion of an international legally binding agreement to address the conservation and the sustainable use of marine biodiversity of the ocean beyond national jurisdiction is intrinsically linked with SDG 14 and the achieving of many of its targets. The negotiations of such agreement, the “BBNJ Treaty”, are entering their final stage, after a lengthy process, as the 4th Intergovernamental Conference closed with a sense of momentum towards the conclusion of the agreement at the IGC-5, already scheduled for August.

The High Ambition Coalition (HAC) launched in Brest, early this year, is a call to the conclusion of the BBNJ Treaty by the end of 2022. So far, the EU Commission and 47 countries, including all the EU member States, have signed the HAC declaration.

The UN Ocean Conference, in Lisbon, will gather world leaders focusing on SDG 14. As the last major ocean related event before the IGC-5, it presents a unique opportunity to reaffirm the declaration and enlarge the political support towards the conclusion of the BBNJ Treaty, by identifying the actions needed to ensure its successful conclusion in 2022, thus being intrinsically connected to the UNOC objectives. It will both respond to the growing stream of affirmation of the urgency and importance of this legally binding instrument per se, which will shape the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction, as well as an integral part of ocean and climate action, fundamental to the achievement of SDG14.



  1. Highlight the efforts of the High Ambition Coalition on biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ HAC), launched in Brest, France at the One Ocean Summit - toward bringing high-level political will and action toward concluding an ambitious BBNJ Treaty in 2022 (https://bit.ly/3sPkKib).
  2. Reach out to potential interested countries, increase the number of countries supporting the HAC declaration, and foster new supporters.
  3. Continue to promote dialogue with all regional groups and other stakeholders on the key steps towards a successful BBNJ agreement in 2022.



One high level panel with short interventions by HL representatives of Portugal, France, the European Commission, as well as another Head of State/Government from a non-European country, the President of the Intergovernamental Conference for the BBNJ and the HAS Youth Ambassador.

A ministerial-level moderated roundtable, with 8-10 speakers from the African Group, G77, PSIS, CLAM and CARICOM, followed by Q&A.

Closing ministerial segment.


Alignment of the side event with the theme of the Conference “Scaling up ocean action based on science and innovation for the implementation of Goal 14: stocktaking, partnerships and solutions”:

The BBNJ Treaty will enhance international law by adopting an implementing agreement of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. This will be an overarching solution to foster ocean action by developing norms on the conservation and sustainable use of oceans and their resources in the main target areas, namely marine genetic resources, area-based management tools, including marine protected areas, environmental impact assessment and capacity building and transfer of marine technology.

This is also closely related with Interactive Dialogue “Enhancing the conservation and sustainable use of oceans and their resources by implementing international law, as reflected in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea”. If negotiations succeed in producing an ambitious regulatory framework, this agreement will constitute a major innovation in global governance of the Ocean and could add robustness to the existing legal framework. The BBNJ negotiations also represent an important shift in focus for UNCLOS, from control and prevention of pollution and living marine resource exploitation, to management of marine protected areas in areas beyond national jurisdiction for the sake of protection, conservation, and sustainable use of marine biodiversity.


Additional details and the program of the event will be disseminated in the coming weeks.


Please direct your queries to: unoc_hacbbnj@mne.pt

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