Resolution VIII.37: International cooperation on conservation of migratory waterbirds and their habitats in the Asia-Pacific region

"Wetlands: water, life, and culture"
8th Meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties
to the Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, Iran, 1971)
Valencia, Spain, 18-26 November 2002

1. RECALLING Article 5 of the Convention, which calls for international consultation and coordination among Contracting Parties to support present and future policies and regulations concerning the conservation of wetlands and their flora and fauna;

2. ALSO RECALLING Recommendation 4.4, which called for networks of wetland reserves to be established; Recommendation 4.12, which recognized the flyway concept for the conservation of wetland bird species; Recommendation 6.4, which called for the establishment of a network of Ramsar-listed and other wetlands of international importance for migratory shorebirds along the East Asian-Australasian Flyway, managed so as to maintain their suitability for migratory shorebirds; and Recommendation 7.3, which requested Contracting Parties to extend their support to the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Strategy 1996-2000 and work towards putting in place a secure and extended framework for international cooperation aimed at the conservation of migratory waterbirds and their habitats in the Asia-Pacific region beyond 2000;

3. FURTHER RECALLING Action 7.2.5 of the Convention's Strategic Plan 1997-2002, intended to "enhance Ramsar's contribution to international cooperation on shared wetland species, notably through cooperative arrangements with the Convention on Migratory Species, flyway agreements, networks and other mechanisms dealing with migratory species", and Action 12.2.2 of the Convention's Strategic Plan 2003-2008, which concerns continued support for the development of regional site networks and initiatives, as exemplified by the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Strategy;

4. AWARE of the significant progress achieved in protecting migratory waterbirds and their wetland habitats through the implementation of the Asia-Pacific Migratory Conservation Waterbird Strategy 1996-2000 and the current implementation of the Strategy 2001-2005;

5. ACKNOWLEDGING the pivotal role of the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Committee, comprising representatives of numerous governments in the region, international organizations and non-government organizations, including Ramsar International Organization Partners, in directing the development and implementation of the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Strategy;

6. FURTHER ACKNOWLEDGING the considerable work undertaken in the region so far in response to Recommendations made by previous meetings of the Conference of the Contracting Parties which have called for greater conservation efforts for migratory waterbirds and their habitats in the Asia-Pacific region;

7. WELCOMING the commitment by the many Contracting Parties in the Asia-Pacific region to advancing the conservation of migratory waterbirds and their habitats through the Strategy;

8. AWARE that there are initiatives under way or being developed for cooperative actions on waterbird flyways in other parts of the world, including inter alia the African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbird Agreement, the Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network, and the Central Pacific Flyway Bird Conservation Working Group;

9. WELCOMING the Memoranda of Cooperation or Agreement developed between the Ramsar Bureau and the Secretariat of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), the South Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), BirdLife International, Wetlands International, and the World Wide Fund for Nature as mechanisms to improve international cooperation on the conservation of migratory species;

10. CONVINCED of the need for continued concerted multilateral collaboration for the conservation of migratory waterbirds and wetlands within the East Asian-Australasian, Central Asian-Indian, and Central Pacific Flyways; and

11. FURTHER CONVINCED that the Ramsar Convention, through the cooperative actions of its Contracting Parties and partner organizations along the East Asian-Australasian, Central Asian-Indian, and Central Pacific Flyways, can facilitate further strengthening of a multilateral approach to waterbird conservation in the Asia-Pacific region;

THE CONFERENCE OF THE CONTRACTING PARTIES

12. CONGRATULATES Wetlands International for its work over the past six years in coordinating the development and implementation of the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Strategy, the Governments of Australia and Japan for providing major resources and support for this work, and other governments, International Organization Partners, and NGOs for their support for its implementation;

13. CALLS UPON Contracting Parties to extend their support to the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Committee in pursuing the full implementation of the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Strategy 2001-2005 and actively to implement the Strategy within their territories so as to realise its long-term conservation objectives for migratory waterbirds and their habitats in all Asia-Pacific countries;

14. COMMENDS the Strategy to other countries within the Asia-Pacific region which are not yet Contracting Parties to the Convention, and encourages them to participate fully in its implementation;

15. CALLS UPON international and bilateral development agencies and institutions to provide financial resources to governments and non-government organizations in the Asia-Pacific region in order to implement the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Strategy 2001-2005, in close cooperation with the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Committee; and

16. REQUESTS the Asia-Pacific Migratory Waterbird Conservation Committee to provide Contracting Parties and the Bureau with regular reports on the progress and outcomes of implementing the Strategy, and to seek to collaborate and share its experiences with waterbird flyway initiatives and agreements in other parts of the world, in order to maximise the capacity of all Contracting Parties and others involved in such initiatives to secure the conservation and sustainable use of the global networks of wetlands which migratory waterbirds and other wetland-dependent species require for their survival.

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