Marine environment projects funded by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD)

The Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) signed a framework Cooperation Agreement, whereby Norad agreed to finance the implementation of activities under the Integrated Technical Cooperation Programme (ITCP) related to the protection of the marine environment, focusing on development cooperation to enhance the capacities of developing countries to implement and enforce related IMO Conventions, codes and other standards.  Under this Agreement, Norad has financed the following projects implemented by IMO:  

Project 1: Assistance to East Asian countries in ratifying and implementing IMO instruments for the protection of the marine environment

This project aims at initiating, facilitating and coordinating a legal, policy and institutional process which will lead the relevant Ministry(ies) and administrations of the six beneficiary countries in the East Asia region (Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam) to undertake actions aiming at:

  • putting in place a legal system that includes a process to prepare for and to ratify or accede to the relevant IMO Conventions which are of high priority to the countries, and promulgating laws and regulations giving full and complete effect to the IMO instruments;

  • setting up organizational structures for discharging their responsibilities as flag State, port State and coastal State; and

  • setting up a system that will ensure that their ports provide the services of adequate reception facilities according to the maritime activities of the port.

The long term goal of the project is the ratification/accession and effective implementation of IMO instruments for the protection of the marine environment. The short term goal is to strengthen the national capabilities for countries to become part to and effectively implement IMO’s environmental instruments. This will translate into enhancing the legal and regulatory framework and implementation capabilities of the countries concerned. 

 In this regard, scope of the project covers:

  • MARPOL (Annex I, II and V);

  • AFS Convention 2001;

  • BWM Convention 2004; and

  • London Convention 1976/London Protocol 1996.

Project 2: Prevention of pollution from ships through the adoption of Particularly Sensitive Sea Areas (PSSAs) within the South-East Asia region (Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Viet Nam)

The seas in the South-East Asia region (SEA) possess globally and regionally significant ecological resources that are under pressure from many sources and activities, including international shipping. Preventing pollution from international shipping through appropriate protective measures would provide for long-term benefits to the marine environment in the region.

The long-term objective is the protection of the marine environment from international shipping through the adoption by IMO of Particularly Sensitive Sea Areas (PSSAs).  In this regard, this project will assist Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Viet Nam (Brunei and Singapore may also be involved as observers) to prepare individual or joint proposals to be submitted to IMO for the designation of PSSAs, areas recognized for their significance in terms of ecological, socio-economic or scientific criteria which are vulnerable to damage by international shipping, together with the adoption of associated protective measures applicable to international shipping. At this stage the areas to be considered for designation as PSSAs shall be regarded as high priority and limited in number as well as less controversial. All the beneficiary countries shall be involved in a national proposal and/or in a joint proposal, the objective being to lead them through the whole process with the expectation that it will be easiest to replicate it in the future when needed.

At completion of the project the following outcomes are envisaged:

  • a study of the maritime traffic within the region assessing the threat from international shipping that will help in identifying/locating/selecting the sensitive sea areas that need special protection;

  • a number of proposals for the designation of PSSAs in SEA together with associated protective measures submitted to the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) for consideration;

  • all countries will have gone through the whole process of preparing for, formulating and submitting an application for the designation of PSSAs; and following designation by MEPC, implementation, compliance monitoring and enforcement mechanisms for PSSAs in place.

Project 3: Enhancing Regional Cooperation Mechanisms on Marine Pollution Preparedness and Response in South Asia region (Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Pakistan and Sri Lanka)

The objective of this project is the implementation of the OPRC Convention and the OPRC-HNS Protocol in the South Asia region by enhancing regional cooperation on marine pollution preparedness and response in the region through the revitalization of the regional contingency plan and its entry into force, together with the Memorandum Of Understanding (MoU) on regional cooperation in case of pollution emergency.

In this regard, the purpose of the project is:

  • to organize and coordinate activities aimed at reactivating the process for the acceptance, entry into force and early implementation of the MoU and of the regional contingency plan;

  • to revitalize the regional cooperation mechanism through revisiting and updating the regional plan, addressing key operational and compensation issues, confirming and strengthening secretarial arrangement and organizing an oil spill preparedness and response exercise at regional level.

The scope of the project is to address the regional mechanisms for cooperation in case of marine pollution incident, in particular the MoU for Cooperation on the Response to Oil and Chemical Pollution in the South Asia Seas Region; the Regional Oil and Chemical Pollution Contingency Plan for South Asia (the Regional Plan); and the secretariat arrangements.

The project, financed by Norad, is implemented by IMO through its Regional Partner the South Asia Co-operative Environment Programme (SACEP). The SACEP Secretariat acts as the secretariat for the MOU and the Regional Plan.