MANILA 01 September 2022 – Member countries of the East Asia Summit (EAS) reaffirmed their commitment to further strengthen regional cooperation towards clean, healthy, and sustainable oceans after a three-day workshop from 30 August to 01 September 2022 in Manila hosted by the Department of Foreign Affairs
Foreign Affairs Undersecretary for Bilateral Relations and ASEAN Affairs and Philippine Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM) Leader Ma. Theresa P. Lazaro emphasized that marine-related issues transcend boundaries and nationalities in her keynote speech at the Workshop on Maritime Cooperation, with the theme “Technical and Scientific Cooperation towards Clean, Healthy, and Sustainable Oceans.”
“Providing solutions to the impending destruction of the oceans requires a multi-stakeholder approach, with emphasis on stronger scientific collaboration. Science must guide our policies, as transformative solutions for sustainable development can be catalyzed through science-based and innovative actions, as well as international cooperation,” said Undersecretary Lazaro.
Meanwhile, Assistant Secretary Daniel R. Espiritu of the Office of ASEAN Affairs reaffirmed in his opening remarks that maritime cooperation will always be a key priority area for the Philippines.
“The Philippines is a maritime state, born of the ocean, protected by the ocean and nurtured by the ocean, with maritime geopolitical strategic predicament, maritime economy and maritime culture.”
Resource speakers from various international organizations such as the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), and Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO (IOC) discussed the current state of the oceans in the East Asia and Indo-Pacific regions, how the EAS participating countries are faring in the implementation of international and regional commitments on ocean sustainability, and identified the need for further collaboration across various stakeholders in order to further progress our actions on marine and ocean issues.
The three-day workshop saw the participation of 57 delegates and speakers from EAS participating countries and international organizations. This is the second EAS Workshop on Maritime Cooperation that the Philippines has hosted since 2019.
The EAS is composed of the following countries: Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Australia, China, Japan, India, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, Russia, and the United States. END