Sustainable Blue Economy

Disputes among countries should be resolved first: Speakers

Speakers at a discussion underscored the need for resolving disputes first among the neighbouring countries to ensure sustainable blue economy.

They came up with the observation at a discussion on ‘Destination Blue: Unlocking the Potential of the Oceans’ organized on occasion of ‘Dhaka Global Dialogue-2019’ at a city hotel on Tuesday.

The way Bangladesh resolved the maritime border conflict with India and Myanmar can be an example for other countries who have similar disputes with their neighbours, they further said.

Adding that Bangladesh has immense potentiality in Blue Economy, they said, “The government of Bangladesh should properly use its oceanic assets to benefit the people.”

At the discussion, British High Commissioner Robert Chatterton Dickson said, “There are a lot of threats in the sea especially pollution, which is a major threat all the time.”

He said the world has set a target of reducing 30 percent pollution from the sea by 2030, and so it is high time to work together to achieve this target for developing ecosystem.

SM Daud Hassan, director of International Centre for Ocean Governance (ICOG), School of Law, Western Sydney University, said, “It’s time to give back a lot to the sea. All development works is needed in the ocean after considering the ecosystem.”

China Sea researchers said all the countries should obey the laws and regulations for the protection of the sea.

Although Bangladesh and India have accepted the judgment of the sea arbitration court, this has not always been the case in all countries, they said. 

Abdul Rahman, director general of Bangladesh International and Strategic Studies, said international organisations can solve many problems relating to the seas. 

On top of the traditional ocean activities such as fisheries, tourism and maritime transport, blue economy entails emerging industries including renewable energy, aquaculture, seabed extractive activities and marine biotechnology and bio prospecting. Blue economy also attempts to embrace ocean ecosystem services that are not captured by the market but provide significant contribution to economic and human activity. They include carbon sequestration, coastal protection, waste disposal, and the existence of biodiversity.