“Ocean conservation requires concerted collective action between science and politics.”

“Ocean conservation requires concerted collective action between science and politics.”

“Given the complexity of ocean management issues, the integration of local and regional knowledge is essential to address the environmental, economic and cultural characteristics of each region,” he noted during a side event. Sustainability: The Role of Science and Political Action”, held at the European Union Pavilion at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28).

Mr. Siddiqui also insisted on the importance of developing the necessary mechanisms and tools to support ocean research.

In his speech, the Minister referred to the recent development of the marine fishing sector in Morocco as a concrete example of the great interest in reliable scientific knowledge in decision-making.

He said that the sustainability of the oceans is extremely important for the Kingdom of Morocco, knowing that the fishing profession on 3,500 km of sea coast depends on maintaining the global ocean in good health and on the effective preservation of marine ecosystems and fish resources. .

He also pointed out that, thanks to the Haliotis marine fishing development strategy, Morocco has invested significantly in research in the field of marine fishing, through a network of research centers and a fleet of six research boats aimed at exploring and understanding marine ecosystems and prospecting for fish resources, as well as Monitoring environmental and oceanographic conditions along the coasts of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic Ocean.

He explains that scientific research provides the basis for making decisions related to the governance of the sector, based on the basics of sustainable exploitation of fishery resources on the temporal dimensions, through planning biological and territorial comfort through zoning.

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He continued that this policy made it possible to support the development of the sector in a sustainable manner, noting that fish production doubled between 2010 and 2022 without compromising the safety of the fish stock, and that more than 95% of the catch is managed through continuously developed management plans. Updated scientific data and assessments conducted by fisheries research have enabled exploitation to be adapted to natural fluctuations, exacerbated by the effects of climate change.

Mr. Siddiqi also stressed that in order to preserve marine ecosystems, the Kingdom has established marine protected areas, where fishing is regulated on the basis of reliable and accurate scientific elements, stressing fishermen’s support for the sustainable management of the sector.

In this regard, the Minister expressed Morocco’s strong support for the Intergovernmental Group on Ocean Sustainability initiative, highlighting that the realization of this initiative is necessary to establish a closer link between knowledge and political action, by bringing together all concerned parties. To participate in building the mitigation and conservation process.

“It is essential to make research results accessible to all decision-makers, especially in a context where the challenges associated with climate change and ocean degradation are increasing on a global scale,” he said.

In a press release, Mr. Siddiqi explained that this Intergovernmental Commission on Ocean Sustainability is not only crucial to improving decision-making in favor of sustainability, but it can contribute to raising awareness of the urgent need to invest widely in developing ocean research and knowledge in its field. All regions of the world’s oceans.

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For her part, the Director General of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries of the European Commission, Charlina Vladimirova Vicheva, confirmed that Morocco is a leader working alongside the European Union, in order to place the issue of the oceans at the heart of the global agenda, and not at the heart of the global agenda. Just from a climate change perspective, but also on a more global level.

She said: “Our common goal is to protect the oceans from three challenges, which are climate change, loss of biodiversity, and pollution,” highlighting the importance of incorporating the topic of oceans into the global report, negotiations on which are still ongoing in Dubai.

During this high-level panel, moderated by ministers, experts and prominent leaders from around the world, discussions focused on the knowledge needs needed to protect the oceans, as well as the scale and type of scientific support needed for innovative solutions for ocean sustainability.

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