Seven ASEAN countries have launched an initiative to improve the environmental health of the seas in South-East Asia, through the implementation of key IMO marine environment protection treaties.
Decisions makers of maritime administrations of the beneficiary ASEAN countries (Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam) met in Bali, Indonesia, from 25 to 27 June, to start the “Marine Environment Protection for Southeast Asia Seas (MEPSEAS) Project”.
The four-year MEPSEAS project (2018-2021) aims to enhance the countries’ capacity to implement a number of high-priority treaties, including the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL); the Anti-Fouling Systems Convention; the London dumping of wastes at sea convention and protocol; and the Ballast Water Management Convention.
The MEPSEAS project will promote national legal and policy developments and capacity building in port and flag state inspections to support enforcement of the selected Conventions. The Project will also support specific port biological baseline survey training, the Green Shipping-Green Port-Green Shipyards (GGG) initiative of the Philippines and a regional maritime technology conference, among other activities.
The latest country to join the project is Myanmar, which aims to initiate actions to accede to and implement two marine environmental Conventions in the near future. For countries which have acceded to the relevant treaties, the new MEPSEAS project will allow them to focus on effective implementation.
Jose Matheickal, Deputy Director (Major Projects) of IMO, noted:
The IMO-Norad foundation project was a remarkable success and IMO is once again very proud to partner with Norad, the ASEAN countries and all the strategic partners to build on the foundation project in a regionally-coordinated way.