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Aims and Outputs of COP 5

The main direct outputs from the Joint COPs will be decisions from each of the Convention’s Conference of Parties, the adoption of protocols for land based activities and sources of pollution, and the adoption of work programmes for 2008-2012 for each Convention. The work programmes will be action-oriented agendas that give a holistic overview for eco-system based coastal and marine management in sub-Saharan Africa, to be implemented by governments and partners from civil society, intergovernmental agencies, projects and the private sector.

In addition, there will be a Joint Declaration issued to NEPAD from the Joint Heads of Delegations. This declaration will cover the common thematic areas that were discussed during the Conferences and will assist in renewing and maintaining governments’ commitment to the implementation of the two Conventions in the context of NEPAD.

Political Commitment : Gathering momentum

There is a burgeoning commitment to the Conventions, as demonstrated by the number of ratifying countries. By 2005, fourteen out of twenty-two countries had ratified the Abidjan Convention. Sierra Leone and Liberia ratified as recently as 2005, and another three countries (Sao Tome, Mauritania, and Cape Verde) are currently in the process of ratifying. All of the ten countries that are signatory to the Nairobi Convention have ratified the Convention. The Republic of South Africa, which had been excluded in 1985, ratified both the Nairobi and Abidjan Conventions in 2002. The governments therefore still see the Conventions as suitable frameworks for managing coastal and marine issues. The Joint COPs provide an important opportunity to reaffirm and strengthen that political will and to increase the visibility of the Abidjan and Nairobi Conventions, as well as the marine and coastal component of the NEPAD Environmental Action Plan

For further explanation regarding the rationale behind the Joint COP, please view Introduction to the Joint COP