Oceans and seas cover over two-thirds of the earth's surface, provide food and minerals, generate oxygen, absorb greenhouse gases and keep climate change in check, determine weather patterns and temperatures, and serve as highways for sea-borne international trade. Oceans and seas can play a major role in contributing to achieving sustainable development, economic growth, and livelihoods.
UNCTAD is supporting developing countries to identify the opportunities and challenges that the oceans economy can bring. It also supports national trade and other competent authorities to design and create an enabling policy and regulatory environment that promotes the development and emergence of sustainable oceans economic sectors through the definition and implementation of national and regional oceans economy and trade strategies.
The project is a point of convergence for conservation and sustainable use of marine resources, and a driver for a blue and green recovery from COVID-19.
Small island nations face an existential and developmental threat from ship-source pollution endangering their vulnerable marine ecosystems and ocean economies. An effective international legal regime can help.