1. I have the honor to deliver this statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.

2. Let me begin by expressing the Group's full support and commitment to this process, recognizing the importance of conservation and sustainable use of the oceans, seas and marine resources in advancing the 2030 Agenda. Following the success of the first UN Ocean Conference in 2017, it is critical to maintain the momentum towards achieving the targets set out in SDG 14.

3. In this regard, we thank the Governments of Portugal and Kenya for taking the initiative to host the 2020 UN Ocean Conference. Rest assured that the Group of 77 and China will exhaust all efforts to make this Conference a success. We encourage all Member States to participate in the Conference at the highest possible level. We see this as an opportunity to re-commit to existing agreements, and forge new level of ambition.

4. We extend our gratitude to you, co-facilitators, for taking on this important role. We are confident that your leadership and guidance will deliver strong outcomes from the Conference. The Group looks forward to constructively engaging in the discussions considering the themes for the interactive dialogues, as well as the declaration for the 2020 UN Ocean Conference.

5. The timing for the Conference is significant, as we are about to commence the UN Decade for Ocean Sciences from 2021 to 2030. Therefore, as we begin our discussions, it is important to keep in mind the overarching theme for the Conference "Scaling up Ocean Action Based on Science and Innovation for the Implementation of Goal 14: Stocktaking, Partnerships and Solutions." We believe that the leadership dialogues and the declaration of the Conference should be guided by this theme.

6. We would also like to take this opportunity to recognize the support that the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, and the Division for Ocean Affairs and Law of the Sea is providing in the organization of the Conference.

7. 2020 is a significant year in determining the future of our oceans, with just a decade left to achieve SDG 14. We will strive to work collectively to ensure that this Conference delivers the results that we need; not only to address the challenges facing oceans, but also to utilize the opportunities that are offered.

I thank you.


1. I have the honor to speak on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.

2. At the outset, we would like to thank the Secretary-General for producing the background note that we are considering today, which includes the proposal for the themes of the interactive dialogues. The document, which also highlights the status, trends, challenges and opportunities for the implementation of SDG 14 provides a good basis to commence our discussions on the substance of the Conference.

3. The Group of G77 and China endorse the themes which have been proposed for the eight interactive dialogues.

4. We recognize that the first seven themes are in line with the ones that were carefully formulated for the 2017 Ocean Conference with inputs from all Member States. Adopting these themes would enable us to utilize this Conference to reflect on the progress that has been made on these issues since the last conference, highlight the persisting challenges, and identify new opportunities which have emerged.

5. We also appreciate the value of the new theme, which addresses the interlinkages between Goal 14 and the other Sustainable Development Goals. We believe this Conference presents an excellent opportunity to harness the synergies between the interrelated Sustainable Development Goals, and use SDG 14 to trigger action across all of the Goals.

6. Moving forward, the Group looks forward to the opportunity to provide input for the concept notes for the dialogues. We believe that the main objectives of these dialogues should be to take stock of existing partnerships, stimulate new partnerships, and advance the opportunities that science and innovation have to offer in implementing SDG 14.

I thank you.


1. I have the honor to deliver this statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.

2. We thank you, co-facilitators, for providing this opportunity to provide some reflections on the declaration for the Conference. As mandated, the Group reiterates that the declaration should be brief, concise and action oriented, focusing on the science-based and innovative areas of action to support implementation of SDG 14.

3. Firstly, keeping in mind that we have adopted a very comprehensive declaration "Our Ocean, Our Future: Call for Action" during the UN Ocean Conference in 2017, our efforts here must be to complement and supplement that outcome. In the new declaration, we must avoid duplicating what has already been captured in the prior Call for Action. We must also avoid reopening and renegotiating its content, which was a comprehensively deliberated and a balanced outcome.

4. Secondly, we wish to support the proposed working method for the deliberations on the declaration. At the last Conference, with the co-facilitators as the penholders, engaging in inclusive and transparent consultations, we were able to emerge with a very balanced and comprehensive outcome.

Distinguished co-facilitators,

5. The Group of 77 and China have full trust, confidence and faith in your able leadership and guidance, as we commence our deliberations on the declaration in an open and transparent manner. We look forward to the zero draft of the text, and request that its subsequent iterations be made available as soon as possible, to enable sufficient time for consultations within the Group.

6. In terms of scheduling the upcoming consultations, we would also request that all efforts are made to ensure that there is no overlap with the other related processes that are ongoing during the time period we have allocated for these consultations. As this is a cross-cutting issue which draws from the expertise of both Second and Sixth Committee delegates, we want to ensure that the relevant delegates can effectively engage in the discussions.

7. Turning now to the substance of the declaration, the Group of 77 and China wish to reiterate the important role of the ocean in poverty eradication, food security, providing employment and livelihoods, and regulating ecosystems and the global climate. SDG 14 is one of the most interlinked Goals in the Sustainable Development Agenda.

8. In this context, it is vital for the declaration to recognize and highlight the current state of the global marine environment. We are alarmed at the rate of deterioration of the marine environment, due to unsustainable anthropogenic activities. In order to derive effective solutions to these issues, we need to identify and understand where we currently are, according to the latest and best available science.

9. With science and innovation as its overarching theme, the outcome of the Conference must expand the horizons for marine scientific research, enable better access to scientific information and data, and assist countries to utilize the potential oceans have to offer in a sustainable way. Due to capacity constraints, amongst the myriad of challenges we face, developing countries are not at parity with other countries to achieve this objective. Therefore, the provision of developmental financial resources, transfer of technology, innovation, enhanced international support and targeted capacity building are necessary elements of the outcome from this Conference.

10. The outcome should also complement and contribute to the advancement of the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, which will be held from 2021 to 2030. The main objective should be to create improved and enabling conditions for developing countries to benefit from, and contribute to Ocean Science. The sustainable use of the immense potential that the ocean has to offer humanity cannot be realized without the ability for developing countries to contribute to it.

11. We believe that it is critical for the Conference to recognize the nexus between the ocean and impacts of climate change. The Special Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate highlights the oceanic challenges which will manifest as a result of climate change. Although this has global implications, developing countries, in particular Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and Least Developed Countries (LDCs) are disproportionately affected. We must explore the science-based and innovative solutions that address these interlinked issues, and also enable research which would enhance further understanding.


12. The conservation and sustainable use of the oceans, seas and marine resources are inherent in SDG 14. As such, there should be a balance between conservation and sustainable use. More data, better access to data, sharing of knowledge and best practices, capacity development, and innovative technologies will enable us to move in the right direction, towards both conservation and sustainable use.

13. Finally, we also believe that the declaration should identify and promote ways to advance the interaction between science and policy making in Ocean governance. While an immense amount of scientific knowledge exists, there are still insufficient avenues for this knowledge to feed into the numerous multilateral processes that are ongoing. The best available science is critical in guiding the path that we take towards 2030 and beyond, for the conservation and sustainable use of oceans.

14. These are some broad and preliminary views on the elements for the declaration, which will be supplemented further by interventions from Members of the Group. The G77 and China will continue to engage constructively in these discussions, and we reassure you of our continued support throughout this process.

I thank you.