Past Programme

23 November High Seas Treaty Dialogue

[20:30 SGT / 13:30 CET / 07:30 EST]

Moderated by Eden Charles

The 23 November dialogue will focus on: 

How to best capture progress that has been made so far? What do you want to see in the programme of work for the IGC 5+ to put the process in the best possible position to finalize the agreement?  

How to maximize the work of the informal working groups? What small groups are needed and in what areas? If small groups are needed, how could they be most effective? What efforts can be made by the plenary to resolve contentious issues? 


Forward-Looking Debrief: 21 October 2022

[20:00 SGT / 14:00 CEST / 08:00 EDT]

At the request of a significant number of Member States for a debriefing session after the fifth session of the Intergovernmental Conference on an international legally binding instrument under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (IGC-5), we are pleased to organize a 2-hour Dialogue on 21 October [20:00 SGT / 14:00 CEST / 08:00 EDT].

This next session of the High Seas Treaty Dialogue offers an opportunity for delegations to share both their reflections regarding IGC-5 and also their views on required next steps leading to the adoption of the BBNJ agreement at the resumed fifth session of the IGC early next year. We are open to receiving other suggestions of substantive areas that may be constructively discussed in subsequent informal intersessional dialogues.


July 2022

The High Seas Treaty Dialogue on 7 July will begin at 14:00 CEST / 08:00 EDT / 20:00 SGT. The dialogue will be 3.5 hours. 

  • The first part of the dialogue, moderated by Ms. Gabriele Goettsche-Wanli, will focus on the Preamble, General Provisions and Final Provisions.  
  • The second part of the dialogue, moderated by Mr. Eden Charles, will focus on Settlement of Disputes and Advisory Opinions.

Delegations are invited to exchange views on proposals from IGC 4 and the President’s further revised draft text of an agreement under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction with respect to the following key issues:

  1. Preamble
  2. General Provisions, in particular application (art. 3(2)); relationship between the Agreement and the Convention and relevant legal instruments and frameworks and relevant global, regional, subregional and sectoral bodies (art. 4(3)); without prejudice (art. 4bis); general principles and approaches (art. 5); and international cooperation (art. 6).
  3. Final Provisions, in particular entry into force (art. 61); provisional application (art. 62); amendment (art. 65); annexes (art. 68); declarations and statements (art. 63bis); right to vote (art. ante 58); division of competence of regional economic integration organizations and their member States in respect of matters governed by this Agreement (art. 59bis).  
  4. Settlement of Disputes and Advisory opinions, in particular article 55 and article 55ter.

May 2022

23 May: Marine Genetic Resources

  • During the dialogue, delegates will hear from experts and will have an opportunity to share proposals and feedback

24 May: Capacity Building and the Transfer of Marine Technology as well as Financial Resources and Mechanisms

  • During the dialogue, delegates will hear from experts and will have an opportunity to share proposals and feedback

25 May: Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) & Strategic Impact Assessments (SEAs)

  • During the dialogue, delegates will hear from experts and will have an opportunity to share proposals and feedback

8-9 December 2021

8 December: Implementation, Compliance, and Dispute Settlement and the Relationship between the institutional arrangements under the future BBNJ agreement and relevant legal instruments and frameworks and relevant global, regional, subregional and sectoral bodies

9 December: Marine Genetic Resources, including questions on the Sharing of Benefits and Transfer of Marine Technology


20-21 October 2021

20 October: Implementation, Compliance, and Dispute Settlement 

21 October: Perspectives on Data Information and Management | Marine Genetic Resources, including Sharing of Benefits


1-2 September 2021

The September dialogues will start at 14:00 CEST / 08:00 EDT / 20:00 SGT. Each dialogue will be 3 hours.

1 September: Principles and Approaches 

  • Session Moderated by Dire Tladi
  • This session will include time set aside to exchange views on process, and the intersessional programme of work.
  • Guiding questions

2 September: Preamble and Scope of Application


29 June – 1 July 2021

29 June: Environmental Impact Assessments, with a focus on Strategic Environmental Assessments. This dialogue will pick up on discussion outcomes from previous informal intersessional High Seas Treaty Dialogues on EIAs.

30 June: Marine Genetic Resources, with a specific focus on Pre and Post Cruise Notification.

1 July: Capacity Building and Transfer of Marine Technology. This dialogue will pick up on discussion outcomes from previous informal intersessional High Seas Treaty Dialogues on CBTMT.


19 & 26 May 2021

19 May: Financial Resources and Mechanisms.

26 May: Area-Based Management Tools—including article 4 on the relationship between the agreement and the Convention and relevant legal instruments and frameworks and relevant global, regional, subregional and sectoral bodies other instruments, and article 6 on international cooperation.


28-29 April 2021

28 April: Implementation and Compliance, Non-Parties, and Settlement of Disputes.

29 April: Final Provisions, with a focus on Entry into Force, Provisional Application, and Amendment of the Agreement and the Annexes.


29-30 March 2021

29 March: Institutional Arrangements: building on discussion outcomes from Ambassador Lee’s March intersessional Presidential forum, and Decision-Making: COP and subsidiary bodies mentioned in article 48, Scientific and Technical Body, Secretariat and Clearing-House Mechanism.

30 March: Continuation of Day 1, plus Scope of Application (article 3(2)) and General Principles and Approaches (article 5).


10-11 February 2021 

Capacity Building (CB) and Transfer of Marine Technology (TMT).


2-3 December 2020

Area-Based Management Tools (ABMTs): Picking up on discussions to date including from the July High Seas Treaty Dialogue on ABMTs and the President’s November Programme of Intersessional Work.


4-5 November 2020

Marine Genetic Resources (MGRs): Picking up on discussions to date including from the June High Seas Treaty Dialogue on MGRs and the President’s October Programme of Intersessional Work on MGRs. This session also addressed Indigenous Knowledge in the context of MGRs.


7-8 October 2020

Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs): Picking up on EIA discussions to date including from the July High Seas Treaty Dialogue on EIAs and the President’s September Programme of Intersessional Work on EIAs, including “Triggering the Conduct of an EIA”, the “Internationalization of the EIA Process” and other EIA related issues.


8-9 July 2020 

Area-Based Management Tools and Environmental Impact Assessments.


10-11 June 2020 

Marine Genetic Resources, Capacity-Building and Technology Transfer.


28-29 April 2020 

BBNJ delegations met for the first preparatory informal online High Seas Treaty Dialogue to exchange ideas and identify preferred choice of treaty provisions to be discussed in the substantive video meetings to be followed in June and July.


3-5 March 2020 – Monaco

Hosted in-person in collaboration with the Prince Albert II Foundation in Monaco, the dialogue focused on Area-Based Management Tools, such as Marine Protected Areas, and Environmental Impact Assessments. The high-level segment in Monaco was facilitated by the 68th U.S. Secretary of State, Mr. John Kerry, currently serving as the first United States Special Presidential Envoy for Climate.


20-21 January 2020 – Oslo

Hosted in-person in collaboration with the Norwegian Nobel Institute in Oslo, the 2-day dialogue focussed on Marine Genetic Resources.