State Minister Sheryna outlines the need for urgent action to conserve and protect the ocean

State Minister Sheryna outlines the need for urgent action ... Image 1


10 February 2024

Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Sheryna Abdul Samad underscored the critical importance of the ocean for island states, emphasizing its role as a lifeline and an integral part of their identity. She did so, speaking at the 7th Indian Ocean Conference being held in Perth, Australia, while speaking on the panel entitled “Our Blue Future- How can the Indian Ocean Region work with Island States to Safeguard the Health of our Shared Ocean Resources?”. She further stressed that the health of the ocean is paramount to the survival and existence of nations like the Maldives.

Highlighting the pressing threats facing ocean health, State Minister Sheryna pointed out the critical need to take urgent action to mitigate these threats and preserve the ocean's delicate balance. State Minister Sheryna proceeded to emphasize the shared responsibility of nations in protecting and preserving this vital resource and called for a robust ocean governance mechanism that extends beyond national jurisdictions.

The Maldives, with over 99% of its territory consisting of water, has demonstrated its commitment to ocean conservation through initiatives such as establishing Marine Protected Areas and implementing sustainable fisheries management practices. However, State Minister Sheryna highlighted the capacity and resource constraints faced by island states, urging greater support from larger nations to overcome these challenges.

In closing, State Minister Sheryna reaffirmed the Maldives' commitment to safeguarding the ocean and called for collective action to ensure a sustainable future where our oceans thrive.

The Indian Ocean Conference, initiated in 2016, is a flagship consultative forum for countries in the Indian Ocean region focusing issues of mutual concern and interest. Held annually, the Conference is an initiative led by India Foundation in association with its regional partners.