CARICOM is holding a three-day workshop in preparation for an upcoming United Nations conference that will seek to establish terms of a treaty to preserve biological diversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction. Love News spoke with Lois Young, the Permanent Representative at the Mission of Belize in New York who spoke about the importance of this treaty.
Lois Young – the Permanent Representative, Mission of Belize: This is the second workshop in Belize where we are preparing the Caribbean Delegates for the Intergovernmental conference that will start in September of this year. The Intergovernmental conference is where are all the countries in the UN will meet to discuss the terms of what the treaty should look like so it’s important for Caribbean countries to be prepared because from the name you can probably detect that its a complicated issue. You’re talking about areas beyond national jurisdiction and the biological diversity within those areas and we may say well why are we concerned about things that are happening in the deep sea beyond our national jurisdiction. The end of our national jurisdiction would be the end of our exclusive economic zone the EEC but we are concerned because i think everybody knows there are no walls in the ocean. We are all connected; what happens out there beyond the EEC is connected to what’s happening in our own territorial waters and so it’s important that we deal with it. That’s one thing; in the terms of food security our fish we have here in our own waters are affected by what’s happening in areas outside of our territory; outside of our EEC.
Young said that the treaty will not be established until 2020. The workshop has the participation of representatives from CARICOM countries.