United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development


UN Conference to Support the Implementation of SDG 14
Preparatory Meeting
15-16 February 2017
'Call for Action'
With a coastline of over 7,500 kilometres, more than a thousand islands, India has a long maritime history. A large percentage of our population lives in cities and towns along the coast. India, therefore, has an abiding interest in the affairs of oceans and seas and their health.
India is party to all important conventions and agreements on oceans, seas and fisheries and also party to the major conventions and instruments on marine pollution and acidification. We have put in place measures to comply with those instruments.
As we had mentioned in our intervention in the morning, oceans, seas and marine resources provide food, energy and livelihood to billions of people around the world. Our local habitats, weather patterns as well as global climate are closely interlinked to our seas and oceans. It is, therefore, our collective responsibility to sustainably use these. Greening the Blue economy requires a much greater attention in our collective interest.
The conservation and sustainable use of oceans, seas and marine resources constitute a crucial element in our collective efforts towards a more secure and sustainable future.
It is heartening to see that the international community is realising the importance of this issue and has included this as a standalone SDG14. The forthcoming UN Conference on Oceans in June will provide further momentum to spreading greater awareness and initiating concrete action.
It is important that we come up with a concise and focused Call for Action to be issued at the June Conference.
The themes proposed for the Partnership Dialogues that broadly correspond to the agreed targets of the SDG14, provide a useful initial basis for developing the elements of the outcome document.
We hope that our discussions will also focus on some of the constraints that hold up effective implementation of the already existing legal and normative framework for the conservation and sustainable use of oceans, seas and marine resources and the possible ways to overcome those constraints.
While the Call for Action should emphasise the scale of the issue at hand and the urgency of action needed, it should be able to provide guidance to specific ways of facilitating international cooperation in implementing the SDG targets.
These are our preliminary views on the elements to the 'Call for Action'. We look forward to constructively engaging with the process going forward and contribute to the discussions. We assure you our strong support in this process.
I thank you.