Regional Initiatives under the Ramsar Convention are intended as operational means to provide effective support for an improved implementation of the objectives of the Convention and its Strategic Plan, as well as to raise the visibility of the Convention in specific geographical regions, through international cooperation on wetland-related issues of common concern, involving all relevant national and regional stakeholders.
This regional cooperation between Parties at international level is realized in two forms: either through physically established Ramsar Regional Centres for regional training and capacity building, or through Ramsar Regional Networks that are set up to support regional cooperation. Currently there are 19 Regional Initiatives at the global level.
At the CBD COP13 the Ramsar Secretariat has organized a side event “Ramsar Convention Regional Initiatives a tool for regional cooperation to promote and implement the objectives of the Ramsar Convention”. The meeting took place on 7 December 2016.
The purpose of the event was to present the perspective of different key actors such as Contracting Parties, Intergovernmental Organizations, and International Organization Partners in the development and consolidation of Regional Initiatives and also to showcase success stories and lessons learned that can contribute to their enhancement.
More than 50 participants attended the event. The meeting was organized as a panel format with the following panelists: Ms. Martha Rojas-Urrego, Secretary General, Ramsar Convention;
Mr. James Gichiah, Kenya Ramsar Focal Point; Mr. Walter Regueiro, Uruguay Focal Point and Mr Denis Landernbergue of WWF International.
The event was moderated by Ms. Lucia Ruiz, Advisor Landscapes Strategy CONANP, Mexico.
Main outcomes of the event:
Ramsar Convention Regional Initiatives
Regional Initiatives in the Africa:
• West African Coastal Zone Wetlands (WACOWet)
• Ramsar Centre for Eastern Africa (RAMCEA)
• Niger River Basin Network (NigerWet)
• Regional Initiative for the Senegal River Basin
Regional Initiatives in the Americas:
• Regional Initiative for the Conservation and Wise Use of High Andean Wetlands
• Initiative for the Conservation and Wise of the Plata River Basin
• Regional Initiative for the Integral Management and Wise Use of Mangroves and Coral Reefs
• Caribbean Wetlands Regional Initiative
• Amazon River Basin
Regional Initiatives in the Asia:
• Ramsar Regional Centre East Asia (RRC-EA)
• Ramsar Regional Centre – Central and West Asia (RRC – CWA)
• Regional Initiative for Central Asia
• Indo– Burma Regional Initiative
Regional Initiatives in Europe: