Memorandum of Cooperation between Ramsar and SPREP



Memorandum of Cooperation


The Ramsar Secretariat

and the

Pacific Regional Environmental Programme (SPREP)


Since its inception in 1971, the Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, Iran, 1971) has provided the single most important intergovernmental forum on wetland conservation issues;

According to the Convention's mission statement, the Contracting Parties agree to "the conservation and wise use of all wetlands through local, regional and national actions and international cooperation, as a contribution towards achieving sustainable development throughout the world".

The Convention is founded on three pillars: promoting wise use of wetlands, developing international cooperation, and developing a network of Wetland sites of International Importance.

SPREP is an intergovernmental organisation having the mandate to promote cooperation in the Pacific region and to provide assistance in order to protect and improve its environment and to ensure sustainable development for present and future generations;

SPREP has the role of secretariat for the Convention for the Protection of the Natural Resources and Environment of the South Pacific Region and related protocols 1986 (the SPREP Convention) and secretariat for the Convention on Conservation of Nature in the South Pacific 1976 (The Apia Convention);

The Convention on Wetlands and the Pacific Regional Environmental Programme share similar conservation and management goals and the positive cooperation between the two institutions to date has been expressed through mutual recognition by our respective governing bodies.

SPREP and the Ramsar Convention have actively collaborated through their first Memorandum of Cooperation and associated Joint Work Plan for the period 20022004, particularly in the areas of promoting the wise use of wetlands, Wetlands Communication -Education and Public Awareness (CEPA) activities, Policy and programmatic synergies, Preparations for WSSD and information exchange, among others;

Therefore, the Secretariat of the Convention on Wetlands (known hereinafter as the 'Ramsar Secretariat') and the Pacific Regional Environmental Programme (known hereinafter as 'SPREP') agree to the following:

Article 1
Policy Compatibility

1) The Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP will cooperate to the extent practicable in the preparation of mutually relevant documents for each other's major meetings, such as the Ramsar Conference of the Parties or the Meeting of the SPREP Governing Council and their subsidiary bodies.

2) The Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP will liaise on key issues to promote the compatibility of their respective policy decisions, particularly in relation to other MEAs, IGOs and NGOs.

3) The Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP will coordinate on matters relevant to their administrative and programmatic relationships with relevant agencies of the United Nations.

Article 2
Institutional Cooperation

1) The Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP will maintain a collaborative programme for sustainable wetland and water resource conservation and management by continuing to increase current consultation and cooperation between their organisations.

2) The Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP will inform their focal points at the regional and national levels of their cooperative activities.

3) In cases where the Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP have different focal points, they will seek to promote consultation and cooperation between these focal points.

4) For general matters, the focal points for the Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP are respectively the Secretary General and the Director, or their assigned delegates.

Article 3
Joint Activities

1) Common areas for joint conservation activities, as identified in the Annex to this Memorandum of Cooperation, will be reviewed annually or at the request of either party.

2) The Ramsar Secretariat will communicate agreement on common areas within their respective networks, and SPREP will endeavour to mobilise the expertise available on wetlands and water resources within its organisation in support of these activities.

3) The Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP will provide each other with details of their annual work programmes to ensure harmonisation of activities at global, regional and country levels.

4) SPREP will promote accession to the Ramsar Convention and seek to promote implementation of the Convention among its member countries.

5) The Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP will endeavour to coordinate their activities in research, training and public awareness.

6) The extent to which the collaborative programme and the joint conservation activities are implemented will be subject to the availability of resources.

Article 4
Consultation, Reporting and Further Guidance

1) The Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP shall institute measures to consult on the implementation of this Memorandum of Cooperation. They will report accordingly to their respective governing as well as advisory bodies and seek further guidance on new areas of cooperation and action.

Article 5
Exchange of Experience and Information

1) The Ramsar Secretariat and SPREP will regularly exchange information of mutual interest.

2) The Secretariats shall link their respective Internet sites.

Article 6
Obligation, Review and Termination

1) This Memorandum of Cooperation constitutes an expression of a shared objective and vision. However, each party's actions will be considered to be that party's sole and separate action, for all purposes, neither party shall claim to be acting on behalf of, or as agent for the other party.

2) The term for this Memorandum of Cooperation is three years. The agreement may be reviewed at the request of either party (usually annually) and may be terminated by either party by giving six months notice in writing.

Peter Bridgewater
Secretary General,
Ramsar Secretariat
Asterio Takesy
Pacific Regional Environment Programme
Date 10/5/06 Date ..5/5/06

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