AOSIS seeks to strengthen international cooperation in support of Blue EconomyJune 29, 2022 AOSIS
Panel 2: Transfer of technology This panel will look at how transfer of technology can create the enabling conditions for LDCs, LLDCs and SIDS to participate effectively in existing and emerging ocean sectors of the blue economy Statement by Mr Alfonzo Webson, Permanent Representative of Antigua and Barbuda, Chair of AOSIS: Historically, Small Island Developing States have been pioneers and leaders in conservation and sustainable use of the ocean. Equipped with traditional knowledge and experience spanning across centuries, we have prospered through advancing ocean-based industries such as fisheries and tourism. However, with new scientific discoveries and advances in technology, it has become apparent that there is still vast untapped potential for SIDS that can accelerate economic growth and sustainable development. This includes expansion of aquaculture and ocean energy as well as utilizing the benefits of marine genetic resources. The main reasons that SIDS have not been able to tap into these emerging sectors is due to the lack of capacity and technology, as recognized in SDG14. However, progress in advancing economic benefits through transfer of technology have been varied, and largely inefficient in SIDS thus far. In this context, I wish to make two main points on the way forward: 1. First, we need the international community to recognize and address the unique capacity needs and technological challenges of SIDS in the context of utilizing marine resources. This is already enshrined in the intergovernmentally negotiated 2030 Agenda, and should also be accurately captured in the context of new legal instruments that are currently under deliberation. As the Chair of AOSIS we have been advocating for clear provisions for capacity building and transfer of technology to SIDS in the context of the new BBNJ instrument, as well as the new legally binding instrument to end plastic pollution. We also need to establish effective mechanisms under these instruments for operationalizing these provisions based on self-identified needs, with adequate resources and transparent monitoring of progress. The support of all UN Member States within these processes is critical to making this a reality. 2. Second, we need to enhance quality partnerships that facilitate transfer of technology to SIDS based on specific national circumstances and priorities. Quality entails phasing out outdated and unsustainable technologies, so that SIDS are not locked in with obsolete technologies, as the rest of the world moves forward. Quality partnerships also ensure the transfer of technology is supplemented with the required human capacity and infrastructure, and adequately resourced for the duration of the partnership. Context specific obstacles, such as connectivity challenges should be factored in formulating these partnerships. While we welcome and appreciate existing partnerships, we believe there is still room for improvement, and have provided a way forward in the “Declaration for the enhancement of marine scientific knowledge, research capacity and transfer of marine technology to SIDS” which was launched by AOSIS on Monday. I encourage all of you to have a look at this Declaration which is available on the AOSIS website, containing eight key principles for enhancing quality partnerships for SIDS. In conclusion, I wish to emphasize that SIDS are committed to expanding our leadership in sustainable ocean management, as reflected in our national and regional policies and strategies. Nonetheless, we need the support of the international community to acquire the tools that we need for advancement, keeping in mind that an investment in our ocean, is an investment in our collective future. Thank you.
Sub Topic: Blue Economy