The ocean is at the core of global connectivity. Safeguarding its future sustainability is of utmost importance to livelihood both at sea and on land. What are some of the major sustainability and security challenges facing the Indo-Pacific and European regions? And how are we to overcome them?

The sustainability of oceans continue to be a priority issue on the global political agenda, with a number of targeted governance initiatives already underway. 

One such initiative, The High Level Panel on Ocean Sustainability, co-chaired by Norway and Palau, and including Japan as a member, has called for the development and implementation of Sustainable Ocean Plans that aim to build integrated knowledge, address both land- and sea-based issues and incorporate climate change implications.

In line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Panel recognizes ocean wealth as a prioritized issue and specifically the establishment and management of sustainable fisheries as a crucial pillar.

Our invited speakers will reflect on their experiences as practitioners, policymakers and academics in their discussion of how to realize a sustainable and secure maritime space. What are the governance gaps that need to be addressed in ensuring the sustainable management of oceans? What more can ocean states, such as Japan and Norway, do to elevate specific ocean governance issues and in what fora?

Specialized in maritime safety and security with more than 30 years of experience in the Japan Coast Guard, Professor and Captain Kentaro Furuya will discuss Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing, which constitutes a threat to the sustainable use of fisheries resources as well as other maritime security issues, such as human trafficking and drug smuggling. Focusing on specific cases in the Indo-Pacific region, he will discuss the role of the flag and coastal states to reduce IUU fishing. Dr. Andreas Raspotnik, an expert on blue economy issues and the governance of aquaculture, will provide an EU perspective on issues related to IUU and how to build inter-regional collaboration in working towards a sustainable and secure maritime space.  

Seminar moderator is NUPI Senior Research Fellow Wrenn Yennie Lindgren, who specializes in international relations in East Asia and Japanese foreign and security policy.

The seminar is hosted by NUPI’s Center for Ocean Governance and is an opportunity to discuss how to strengthen ocean cooperation between Japan and Europe in in the run-up to the Our Ocean Conference in Palau in April and the the 2nd UN Ocean Conference in Portugal in June.