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Common Oceans - A partnership for sustainability in the ABNJ
© Stuart Simpson

Ocean partnerships for sustainable fisheries and biodiversity conservation: models for innovation and reform


Develop business plans for investment in long-term, sustainable management of several different fisheries, each spanning areas within and beyond national jurisdiction.

The project will be implemented by the World Bank through regional execution agencies and focus on three areas:

  • The development of large-scale pilot project activities for sustainable fisheries in priority ocean areas
  • Oceans innovation grant facility
  • Monitoring and evaluation of pilots and innovation grants, advocacy and lesson learning


This project aims to support pilot public and private sector investment in better managed fisheries based on migratory stocks that straddle developing countries' coastal jurisdictions (Exclusive Economic Zones) and ABNJ. More specifically, it will identify and help develop up to six projects with high potential to deliver enhanced economic, social and environmental benefits from living marine resources. Such benefits will be achieved through reforms in the ways fisheries are managed, with a particular focus on institutions that foster effective rights-based management. The project will contribute directly to the objectives of both the ABNJ Program and the recently convened Global Partnership for Oceans (GPO). Co-financing will be available through GPO partners and includes existing and planned World Bank IDA/IBRD4 investments.

Business plans will incorporate the economic, technical and financial rationale and feasibility to attract investment in pilot implementation (2013–16) by public or private capital markets. Once implemented, pilots will contribute to increasing sustainable, net economic benefits to coastal and island developing countries while enhancing ocean biodiversity conservation.

Project Partners

Conservation International
World Wide Fund For Nature
Bay of Bengal Programme (BOBP-IGO)
Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA)
Western Central Atlantic Fishery Commission (WECAFC)
the Workd Bank