Ocean Science and Sustainable Development: Opening of 32nd Session of United Nations Oceanographic Commission

On June 21, 2023, the 32nd session of the General Assembly of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) opened at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) headquarters in Paris. The Vietnamese delegation attending the conference included Assoc. Prof. Dr. Dao Viet Ha, Director of Institute of Oceanography, President of Vietnam IOC Committee;, Ambassador Le Thi Hong Van, Permanent Representative of Vietnam to UNESCO;, and representatives of Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Speaking at the plenary session, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Dao Viet Ha welcomed the report of the IOC Executive Secretary, appreciating the IOC's role as the UN's main coordinating body on ocean science issues. She affirmed that Vietnam always supports the IOC to strengthen its role in promoting international cooperation for the conservation and sustainable use of seas and oceans. As a member of UNESCO's Executive Council, Vietnam has co-sponsored UNESCO's draft Resolution on building more sustainable resources for IOC activities.

Vietnamese delegation at the Conference

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Dao Viet Ha emphasized that Vietnam attaches importance to international development and cooperation in marine science and technology, considering it as one of the main solutions to implement the Vietnam Strategy for Sustainable Development of the Marine Economy to 2030 with a vision to 2045. She informed about Vietnam's efforts to develop a sustainable ocean economy and respond to ocean-related challenges, as well as cooperation projects within the framework of the IOC Subcommittee on the Western Pacific – IOC/WESTPAC. The Vietnamese delegation leader called on countries to strengthen international cooperation at all levels, taking into account the needs of developing countries, especially vulnerable coastal countries.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Dao Viet Ha (2nd place from left) with Vietnamese delegation attending the Conference

The meeting took place in the context of the international community's increasing interest in promoting diversified and substantive international cooperation on the sea, making efforts to realize the United Nations' sustainable development goals, including the 14th goal on the conservation and sustainable use of seas and oceans. New recent developments can be mentioned as the adoption of the Document on the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity outside national jurisdiction, the process of negotiating global agreements on plastic pollution, including the issue of ocean plastic waste. 

In the following days, the conference will continue to discuss the implementation of major programs and initiatives in the coming time such as: Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development 2021-2030, State of the Ocean Report, Global Ocean Monitoring System, Capacity Building Strategy, and IOC's contribution to UN ocean governance. At the same time, the Conference will conduct the election of the President, Vice Presidents and members of the IOC Executive Council on 28 June 2023.

IOC is a UNESCO-affiliated agency tasked with coordinating international cooperation and marine science development, and is the core agency implementing the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development 2021-2030. The goal of the Decade is to identify the ocean science knowledge needed for sustainable development; enhance the exchange of information and knowledge; and use ocean insights to implement sustainable development solutions.

Within the framework of the IOC Subcommittee for the Western Pacific Region, the Vietnam IOC Committee leads and participates in many regional projects on marine science within the framework of IOC/Westpac such as: Research project on marine toxins and food safety; Ocean Acidification Research Network Project; and tThe initiative to save coral reefs...


Translated by Phuong Ha
Link to Vietnamese version

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