Consultative Committee for the BBNJ Secretariat Headquarters in Valparaiso meets for the first time

May 23th, 2024

The first session of the Consultative Committee for the BBNJ Secretariat Headquarters in Valparaiso was held today at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Chile, a space for participation and dialogue with all institutions, governmental and non-governmental, that have a legitimate interest in the process for the establishment of the BBNJ Agreement Secretariat in the capital of the Valparaiso Region. The meeting was headed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Alberto van Klaveren.

The committee will seek to maintain an open dialogue through which to report on the implementation of the strategy, progress made and challenges identified. In the same line, it will be a space for civil society and its components to deliver their opinions and offer possible solutions and proposals.

"Chile has proposed that the city of Valparaiso host the BBNJ Secretariat when it enters into force. This proposal is born in accordance with our foreign policy, which places the ocean among its highest priorities. It is also a reflection of our strong commitment to the values of inclusive multilateralism," said the Foreign Affairs Minister during the session.

"We recognize that the efforts required for the success of this aspiration must be cross-cutting, multi-sectoral and collaborative. By virtue of this, the establishment of this Consultative Committee for the BBNJ Secretariat Headquarters in Valparaiso is a sign of our commitment to include the participation of all relevant stakeholders," the Minister complemented. In that sense, he added that "in that spirit, I would like to extend a warm welcome to the collaboration between the various sectors that are present: the private sector, scientific sector, industrial sector, artisanal, indigenous, local and citizens that give life to the important city facing the sea in this consultative body".

The Consultative Committee is made up of about 30 representatives and institutions, including the Regional Government of Valparaíso and the Municipality of Valparaíso; NGOs; representatives of the private, fishing and academic sectors, and civil society organizations. Today's session was attended by the Mayor of Valparaíso, Jorge Sharp, and the Chancellor of the University of Chile, Rosa Devés, among others.