The World Ocean Council (WOC) aims to keep stakeholders informed and engaged regarding the UN negotiations to expand the Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) to include a new legally binding instrument on the conservation and sustainable use of marine life in areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ).

Legally binding, the BBNJ will create new international high seas regulation on environmental impact assessments (EIAs); area-based management tools including marine protected areas (MPAs); capacity-building and transfer of marine technology; and marine genetic resources (MGRs) including benefit sharing.

The WOC will participate in the third round of BBNJ negotiations which take place at UN headquarters in New York from 19-30 August.

On 28 August, the WOC will hold a side event at the negotiations on “Methods and Tools for Documenting Human Activity and Assessing Threat and Risk to High Seas Biodiversity”.

The annual WOC Sustainable Ocean Summit (SOS) in Paris on 20-22 November, will again provide the only regular briefing on the BBNJ Treaty specifically for the ocean business community.


The WOC is working to develop the “BBNJ Business Coalition” for coordinated industry involvement in the BBNJ process.

The Coalition will seek to develop coordinated industry input to ensure that the BBNJ will be practical, implementable and engender constructive ocean business community engagement in the conservation and sustainable use of marine life in international waters.

The WOC BBNJ Business Coalition participants (as well as WOC Members) will receive expert review and analysis of the BBNJ process, covering the negotiation progress and dynamics, the priority BBNJ issues, concerns and input of governments and other stakeholders, and the evolving content of the draft new legally binding agreement.

Anonymous. (2019). WOC ACTIVELY INVOLVED IN BBNJ NEGOTIATIONS. [Blog]. WOC ACTIVELY INVOLVED IN BBNJ NEGOTIATIONS. Available at: . [Accessed 28 August 2019]. 

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