UN-Oceans: Inter-agency Coordination Mechanism
To present a coordinated and comprehensive view of UN agency activities in support of Chapter 17, the UN agencies dealing with oceans and coastal issues formed the Sub-committee on Oceans and Coastal Areas of the Administrative Committee on Coordination (ACC SOCA) in 1993. Following a decision taken at the World Summit on Sustainable Development and building on previous inter-agency efforts on oceans, the Chief Executives Board for Coordination (CEB) decided in 2003 to establish UN-Oceans as UN inter-agency coordinating mechanism on oceans and coastal issues. UN-Oceans seeks to enhance the coordination, coherence and effectiveness of competent organizations of the United Nations system and the International Seabed Authority, in conformity with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, the respective competences of each of its participating organizations and the mandates and priorities approved by their respective governing bodies.

UN-Oceans was established to:

  • Strengthen and promote coordination and coherence of United Nations system activities related to ocean and coastal areas;
  • Regularly share ongoing and planned activities of participating organizations within the framework of relevant United Nations and other mandates with a view to identifying possible areas for collaboration and synergy;
  • Facilitate, as appropriate, inputs by its participating organizations to the annual reports of the Secretary-General on oceans and the law of the sea and on sustainable fisheries to be submitted to the Secretariat;
  • Facilitate inter-agency information exchange, including sharing of experiences, best practices, tools and methodologies and lessons learned in ocean-related matters.

In 2013, the Terms of References of UN-Oceans were revised (please refer to General Assembly resolution A/68/70 [Arabic] [Chinese] [French] [Russian] [Spanish]
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