United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Italy, Spain and Turkey


New York, 5-9 May 2014


Statement delivered by the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation. Secretary General of International Development Cooperation

Cluster 7: Conservation and sustainable use of marine resources, oceans and seas; Ecosystems and Biodiversity
Thursday 8th May – Morning session
I have the honour to speak on behalf of Italy and Turkey.

Mister Co-Chair,

Our Troika fully recognizes the fundamental importance of oceans and seas for sustainable development and we have no doubt that they should be prominently reflected in the Sustainable Development Goals. Therefore we welcome the Focus Area on Conservation and sustainable use of marine resources, oceans and seas, and we support the consideration of a goal in this regard.

We particularly support target b) on the restoration and protection of marine ecosystems, and target g) on the elimination of harmful subsidies. We also support particulary target e) on the elimination by 2020 of illegal unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and destructive practices, we believe this target could be improved using the following formulation: “To strengthen in an urgent basis action to prevent, deter and eliminate illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and to manage by-catch, discards and other adverse ecosystem impacts from fisheries, including by eliminating destructives fishing practices.

Ecosystems and Biodiversity includes a number of issues that are at the heart of sustainable development. Therefore, we welcome the inclusion of a Focus Area on Ecosystems and Biodiversity and the consideration of a goal to protect and restore ecosystems and to halt biodiversity loss. We want to highlight the need to ensure consistency with the CBD Aichi Biodiversity Targets. It is also important to ensure consistency with CBD objectives in relation to the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources

We welcome in particular targets b) on conservation and sustainable use of ecosystems, g) on the need to end poaching and trafficking of endangered species and h) on elimination of invasive alien species. We also welcome target a) on halting the loss of biodiversity but we believe that could be adjusted according to the language used in the CBD Aichi Biodiversity Targets. In target i) we would like to add at the end of the sentence the words “ and small-holder farmers”, to emphasize that smallholder farmers are guardians of biodiversity and produce benefits at the local, national or even global level. We also support target e) for land degradation.

As previously stated, regarding target f) we would prefer to use the internationally agreed language so it would read: “ensure fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources"

We welcome the integration of targets related to biodiversity conservation into Focus Areas 2, 4 and 13 (Sustainable Agriculture, Water and Sanitation and Oceans) and we would like also to see biodiversity conservation targets integrated into other broader Focus Areas such as 1 and 11 on Poverty Eradication and Sustainable Consumption and Production.

We suggest the inclusion of targets for the establishment and management of protected areas and enhancement of ecosystem resilience.

Finally, and as addressed in previous sessions by our constituency, the relevant role of forest in achieving the three dimensions of the Sustainable Development should be better captured in the document.

Regarding targets related to forests and mountain ecosystems, we welcome the ones set out in the current draft document, but we consider that some targets regarding social benefits from forests and mountains and their contribution green economy are still missing. For instance:
-By 2030, social and cultural benefits from forests, mountains and trees are improved.
-By 2030 resilience and ecosystem benefits of forests and mountains are enhanced

Thank you very much Mr. Co-Chair