The Southeast Atlantic and Southeast Pacific regions are both characterised by their high biological productivity, supported by important oceanic currents. Recognising the need to ensure conservation and sustainable use of this biodiversity, coastal States in these regions cooperate through regional organisations to improve ocean governance, including in Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (ABNJ).

Within these two regions, members of the Permanent Commission for the South Pacific (CPPS) signed the 2012 Galapagos Commitment, in which they commit to promote coordinated action ‘regarding their interests in living and non-living resources in ABNJ’; and in the Southeast Atlantic, member States of the Abidjan Convention requested that the Secretariat set up a working group to study all aspects of the conservation and sustainable use of BBNJ within the framework of the Convention.


This report is intended to provide a review of the relevant governance frameworks currently in place for the management of high seas biodiversity in these regions. The report uses the issues under discussion in the ongoing negotiations for a new legally binding BBNJ agreement under the United Nations, as well as selected Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14 targets, as a lens through which to assess progress towards conservation and sustainable use.

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