Common Oceans - A partnership for sustainability in the ABNJ

Who benefits from the Common Oceans ABNJ Program?

Fisheries in ABNJ contribute to employment, nutrition and trade. At the same time, healthy ecosystems are vitally important for marine biodiversity and for maintaining the resources we depend on for food and other ecosystem services.

Although the benefits vary greatly among areas, millions of families in both developing and developed countries depend on fishing jobs and associated activities — from boat construction to harvesting and marketing seafood. The Common Oceans ABNJ Program is intended to help ensure their food and livelihoods security through the long-term management and sustainability of ABNJ fisheries and the ecosystems on which they depend. Improved fisheries management and conservation of biodiversity will lead to global economic benefits, related to both use and non-use values, due to the increased health and potential for long-term use of these important natural resources.

What difference can it make?

The Common Oceans ABNJ Program offers an opportunity to move further – and to move together – by leveraging resources, knowledge and experience from partners to bring about transformational changes. By providing leadership in making the sustainability of ABNJ a priority, ultimately, the Program will lead to improved global sustainable fisheries management and biodiversity conservation in ABNJ.

At stake are 60% of the world’s oceans and related marine resources. The Program can also help States better fulfil their obligations under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), particularly regarding the conservation and management of living resources and ecosystems in the high seas. It will further promote the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries and address global calls to reduce the illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing currently undermining efforts for promoting sustainable ecosystem-based practices.

By effectively managing fisheries and conservation of marine biodiversity in ABNJ, the promise of sustaining the oceans and its benefits for future generations can be fulfilled.