Five states have responsibilities to administer Arctic Ocean: Cannon (2)

10:33, March 30, 2010      

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Cannon said that the Arctic Ocean coastal states would be the first ones affected and the best places to respond.

He revealed that the Arctic Ocean coastal states were working toward a legally binding Arctic search and rescue agreement through the Arctic Council. They were also pursuing a mandatory regime to make shipping in the Arctic waters safer through the International Maritime Organization.

The Arctic Ocean coastal states are committed to implementing the Arctic Council's Arctic Offshore Oil and Gas Guidelines to ensure the protection of the Arctic marine environment during development, since they recognized that, managed sustainably, the immense resource potential of the Arctic Ocean would contribute to regional economic and social development.

They stressed the importance of polar science, and agreed to carry out more research into fish stocks and their ecosystems.

In the mean time, the Arctic Ocean coastal states agreed on the value of creating an Arctic regional hydrographic commission to enhance understanding of the features of oceans and their coasts for safe navigation.

The Arctic Ocean Foreign Ministers' Meeting, which was launched in 2008, is a conference attended by the five coastal states of the Arctic Ocean to discuss issues including environmental regulation, maritime security, mineral exploration, polar oil oversight, and transportation.

Cannon, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Viktorovich Lavrov, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Stre and Danish Minister for Justice Lars Barfoed attended the meeting hosted by Canada this year.

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