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Professor Minas Participates in International Symposium on “Marine Scientific Research and the Law of the Sea”

The potential for a new treaty to protect high seas biodiversity was on the agenda at the Ocean Law and Governance International Symposium on “Marine Scientific Research and the Law of the Sea”, which was held in Hangzhou during 26-27 October with participation from STL. The symposium was jointly organized by the Centre for Ocean Law and Governance/Guanghua Law School, Zhejiang University, and the National Collaborative Centre for South China Sea Studies, Nanjing University.

STL Assistant Professor Stephen Minas participated in the session on “Emerging Challenges to the Freedom of Marine Scientific Research”, with a presentation on the topic on marine technology transfer in a new international legally binding agreement on the protection of biodiversity in areas of the sea beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ), which is currently being negotiated. Professor Minas discussed options for technology transfer through the new agreement, building on lessons learned from the technology programs of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Paris Agreement and the Convention on Biological Diversity. Professor Minas’ presentation drew on his recently article published in AJIL Unbound. Other speakers in the same session included Erik Franckx, Professor of International Law at Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), QIN Tianbao, Professor at Wuhan University Institute of International Law, and Anastasia Telesetsky, Professor at University of Idaho College of Law.

The symposium was held as United Nations talks to establish a BBNJ agreement enter an important phase. An international preparatory committee on the new agreement delivered its report in mid-2017. Following this, an intergovernmental conference was convened to negotiate the new agreement, and held its first session in September 2018. Further negotiating sessions will be held in 2019 and 2020.

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