Cariwet in Paramaribo, Suriname hosts the 3rd meeting of the Regional Initiative for the Conservation and Wise Use of Caribbean Wetlands

On 20 May, Mr Ginmardo Kromosoeto, Minister of Physical Planning, Land and Forest Management in Suriname, opened the Meeting of the Regional Initiative for the Conservation and Wise Use of Caribbean Wetlands in Paramaribo, a UNESCO World Heritage site. On behalf of the President of the Republic of Suriname, his Excellency Desire Delano Bouterse, Mr Kromosoeto gave a warm welcome to the members of the initiative and the representatives of the different organizations present on site. The Minister highlighted that sustainable development is a key and cross-cutting issue for the Association of the Caribbean States (Caricom). Wetlands in the Caribbean are probably some of the least known, least protected and most threatened wetlands worldwide. It is essential that these wetlands are included in the development plans of Caribbean countries, he said.

Participants of the meeting with Mr Ginmardo Kromosoeto, Minister of Physical Planning, Land and Forest Management in Suriname


During the first day’s discussions, representatives from attending countries reported on the implementation of the Ramsar Convention at national levels. They also listed some of the main threats faced by Caribbean wetlands. All the countries agreed that Caribbean wetlands have great value and importance, and not only in terms of climate change mitigation. They agreed to say they are all moving in the right direction but “they are still not there yet”.

A representative of one of Ramsar’s International Organization Partners (IOPs), WWF-Guianas, presented the ongoing activities in the creation and management of protected areas in Suriname and Guyana with a specific focus on wetlands, while another IOP representative, BirdLife-Americas, shared the results of the initiative of mangroves alliance and ecosystem services. Other issues such as the effective management of Ramsar Sites, and the work plan and financial strategies for the sustainability of the initiative in the short term were also part of the agenda for this meeting.

Reported by Maria Rivera, Senior Regional Advisor for the Americas

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