The South African Deputy Minister of Economic Development and a Member of the Inter-ministerial Committee on Phakisa: Oceans Economy, Mr MB Masuku, was the Head of the South African delegation and deputised by Ambassador Gaoretelelwe, to the Oceans Meeting hosted by the Portuguese Ministry of the Seas from 7 – 8 September 2017 at the Champalimaud Foundation and the Jerónimos Monastery in Lisbon.
The Oceans Meeting included high-level representatives, many at ministerial level from 65 countries and 10 international organisations.
South Africa emphasized the need for nations to have tight individual national plans on the sustainable use and preservation of the Ocean that are canvassed with all stakeholders including government, business, NGOs and communities. Deputy Minister Masuku shared with the meeting the “Phakisa: Oceans Economy” concept and how it is being used as an economic driver, while ensuring preservation and protection through protection and governance and decision-making based on evidence of intense research. The common thread that ran through most statements were that our oceans require urgent and collaborative global action, especially needing sharing of information together with dedicated science & technology research and innovation.