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Pacific countries discuss financial management options for deep sea minerals development

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26 August 2015, Nadi

Deep sea mining is an emerging industry in the Pacific region and has the potential to become a major new revenue stream for Pacific Island countries.

Effective management of this revenue will be critical to ensure that long term benefits are realised.

Through the European Union Deep Sea Minerals Project, the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) is partnering with the International Monetary Fund and the Pacific Financial Technical Assistance Centre to hold a workshop in Nadi this week (24-27 August) that focuses on the management of revenue emanating from deep sea minerals development.

Representatives from 14 Pacific Island countries, civil society groups, the private sector, finance officials and experts have been invited to participate.

The workshop aims to develop and discuss appropriate fiscal regimes, revenue management and public financial management options that can be considered and implemented for deep sea minerals mining.

“This is part of EU ongoing efforts to assist Pacific countries to prepare to effectively manage deep sea mineral resources that occur within their waters and their interests in the international seabed area,” SPC Deep Sea Minerals Project Manager, Akuila Tawake, said.

“Participants will learn how to develop appropriate revenue management schemes to ensure that countries receive their fair share of the proceeds from such mining,” Mr Tawake added.

Pacific countries are rightly concerned that Deep Sea Mining projects must be socially acceptable, ensure that the environment is protected and guarantee that they contribute to the genuine development and prosperity of the countries and their people said Johnny Engell-Hansen, Deputy Head of Delegation of the European Union for the Pacific.

On the basis of case study exercises, the participants are also expected to discuss, consider and endorse the Pacific Islands Regional Deep Sea Minerals Financial Framework, developed by SPC and the Pacific Financial Technical Assistance Centre.

Pacific ACP (Africa Caribbean Pacific) States represented include Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.

This is the seventh regional training workshop in the Deep Sea Minerals project series. The mining of deep sea minerals is yet to commence in the Pacific region.

For more on the European Union Deep Sea Minerals Project implemented in partnership with SPC, -visit http://gsd.spc.int/dsm

Media contact: Akuila Tawake, SPC-EU Deep Sea Minerals Project Manager, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ), +679 3249272Appeler : +679 3249272 or +679 3381377Appeler : +679 3381377 ext: 36272

Last Updated on Sunday, 20 September 2015 20:07  

Newsflash

13th September 2012 - A deep-sea minerals training workshop to address issues associated with deep-sea minerals and mining, was recently held in Nadi as part of a series of capacity building activities aimed to develop and enhance regional knowledge on geological, technological, biological and environmental aspects of deep-sea minerals.

The workshop was organised by the EU-funded, SPC Deep Sea Minerals (DSM) Project. Participants included Government officials, primarily from Ministries of 13 island countries associated with minerals, natural resources, environment and fisheries, as well as representatives from regional civil society groups. These included the Pacific Islands Association of NGOs (PIANGO),  Ipukarea Society (TIS) and the Civil Society Forum of Tonga (CSFT).

Scientists from the United States, Korea, Australia, Belgium, New Zealand, SPREP and SPC were also in attendance.

Dr Russell Howorth, the Director of the SOPAC Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) said that the workshop played an important role in providing participants with a better understanding of deep-sea environments, the nature of those seabed mineral deposits and the biological communities associated with them.

‘The protection of the ocean environment and the preservation of rare and fragile ecosystems and ocean habitats must be balanced against the emerging new economic opportunity presented for Pacific Island countries by exploring for deep sea minerals and their possible future exploitation,’ said Dr Howorth. ‘The precautionary approach must prevail particularly in the exploration and potential exploitation of seabed mineral deposits.’