At the Sustainable Ocean Summit (SOS) 2016 held in Rotterdam, Netherlands from Nov 29 – Dec 2, PEMSEA announced a new partnership with the World Ocean Council (WOC), an international business leadership alliance dedicated to Corporate Ocean Responsibility.
The SOS brought together over 250 ocean industry participants and stakeholders from more than 30 countries around the conference theme of “Ocean 2030: Sustainable Development Goals and the Ocean Business Community”. PEMSEA sat on a panel with other Large Marine Ecosystem (LME) programs for a discussion on the value of LME programs to ocean industry. For the closing plenary session, PEMSEA joined a panel of finance and investment experts in presenting its current blue economy investment efforts in East Asia.
As an intergovernmental organization established between 11 country partners and 21 non-government organizations, PEMSEA understands the importance of multi-sectoral partnership. To meet its goal of 25% coverage of the region's coastline under integrated coastal management (ICM) by 2021, PEMSEA recognizes the critical role that industry must play. In 2015, the East Asian Seas Sustainable Business Network was launched as a regional coalition of forward-thinking companies focused on building a blue economy through the protection, conservation and sustainable use of oceans and coasts in the region.
The partnership between PEMSEA and WOC provides a unique opportunity for collaboration between WOC, PEMSEA and the East Asian Seas Sustainable Business Network on blue economy development, ocean investment and linkages between regional and global ocean governance and industry.
Paul Holthus, Founding President and CEO of the World Ocean Council, stated “the coastal and marine environment in East Asia, which includes the Coral Triangle, is one of the richest and most biodiverse in the world. Coastal and marine industries in the region such as shipping, seafood and tourism play a significant role in both the regional and global economy, and WOC welcomes the opportunity for deeper engagement in East Asia through an organization with PEMSEA’s reach and reputation in the region.”
Stephen Adrian Ross, Executive Director for PEMSEA, added, “As a respected alliance for bringing together a diverse ocean business community, WOC has an important role to play in driving stewardship of the East Asian seas and connecting the region to the broader international discussion on sustainable development of coasts and oceans. Leveraging our strengths as regional and international organizations, PEMSEA and WOC have an opportunity to support industry on critical regional issues and promote investment in blue economy, strengthening the links between companies, governments, scientific institutions and other stakeholders at the regional and international levels.”