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Blue Economy

Introduction

The Blue Economy was recognised as a priority focus area at the 14th IORA Ministerial Meeting in Perth, Australia, on 9 October 2014. The Blue Economy captured the attention of all IORA Member States due to its growing global interest and potential and for being recognised as the top priority for generating employment, food security, poverty alleviation and ensuring sustainability in business and economic models in the Indian Ocean. Considering its wide range of valuable resources, the Blue Economy is gaining increasing interest in IORA Member States that are all committed to the establishment of a common vision that would make this sector a driver for balanced economic development in the Indian Ocean Rim region.

Since 2014, several capacity building programmes have been carried out covering a wide range of areas, includinginter alia: fisheries and aquaculture; seafood processing, handing and storage; seafood quality and safety; seaport and shipping; maritime connectivity; and ocean forecasting. The First IORA Ministerial Blue Economy Conference (BEC) was held in Mauritius on 3 September 2015 where the Blue Economy Declaration was adopted. Reflecting on the global trends, this Declaration seeks to harness oceans and maritime resources to drive economic growth, job creation and innovation, while safeguarding sustainability and environmental protection.

With the new challenges that the Blue Economy sector is facing, IORA is striving to promote this important sector as a driver for sustainable development; research and development; investment, technology transfer, with capacity building being crucial in exploring the full potential of the oceans for the socio-economic benefit of the region.