Seas and Oceans: Treaties

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office written question – answered on 23rd February 2023.

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Photo of Kerry McCarthy Kerry McCarthy Shadow Minister (Climate Change and Net Zero)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, if the Government will take steps to conclude a legally-binding mechanism for the designation of Marine Protected Areas on the high seas as part of a global high seas treaty ahead of the upcoming fifth session of the intergovernmental conference on marine biodiversity.

Photo of Anne-Marie Trevelyan Anne-Marie Trevelyan Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)

Negotiations in the Intergovernmental Conference to negotiate a new Implementing Agreement under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ) resumed at the UN on 20 February. The UK strongly supports the conclusion of an ambitious agreement at these negotiations and is working hard with international partners to achieve that outcome, which will include a mechanism for establishing Marine Protected Areas in the high seas. Negotiations conclude on 3 March.

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