Pacific Islands Regional Ocean Policy and Framework for Integrated Strategic Action
At their 1999 meeting, Pacific Islands Forum Leaders endorsed a list of recommendations emerging from the Pacific Regional Follow-up Workshop on the Implementation of the Law of the Sea Convention, convened in Tonga in 1999. Although most of the recommendations could only be implemented by national governments, one of the recommendations — that a regional ocean policy be produced — was adopted as a regional level initiative. The Marine Sector Working Group (MSWG) of the Council of Regional Organisations in the Pacific (CROP) was tasked with developing a regional ocean policy. The draft policy produced by the MSWG was presented to official meetings and governing councils of the various CROP organisations, and was subsequently endorsed by the 33rd Pacific Islands Forum, in 2002. In doing so, Forum leaders recalled their 1995 decision urging members to become parties to the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea at the earliest opportunity. Leaders called for follow-up action plans, both for the region and for individual countries.