Today, the Secretary-General of the International Seabed Authority (ISA), H.E. Mr. Michael W. Lodge, and the Chairman of the Ocean Mining Industry Promotion Roundtable, Mr. Nobuaki Aoyama, signed a letter of cooperation to foster the relationship between the two institutions on strategic areas of mutual interest.

This new strategic partnership is set to strengthen the collaboration between ISA and the Japanese industry involved in the development of technology of relevance for deep-sea-related activities, reflecting a joint commitment to enhancing sustainable practices in seabed mineral resources management.

Established in 2009 when the Japanese Government formulated its Plan for the Development of Marine Energy and Mineral Resources, the Ocean Mining Industry Promotion Roundtable gathers industry leaders in advanced technologies, which cooperate closely with academic sectors and research institutions to conduct interdisciplinary studies based on a wide range of perspectives.

“The visit of H.E. Mr. Lodge to Japan in February was a turning point for our relationship,” said Mr. Nobuaki Aoyama. “I am happy as I sign this letter of cooperation, which will surely fortify the ties between our two entities.”

Reflecting on the importance of the partnership for the work under development by ISA, Secretary-General Lodge highlighted the critical value ISA places in fostering dialogue among relevant stakeholders in support of enhanced awareness and public information as well as strengthening deep-sea-related knowledge and the capacity of developing States.

“Collaborating with the Ocean Mining Industry Promotion Roundtable will enable us to tap into advanced knowledge about the use and development of technologies and practices essential to achieve the responsible management of seabed minerals of the Area. This cooperation aligns with our commitment to the sustainable management of ocean resources in accordance with environmental safeguards,” said Mr. Lodge.

This new partnership will take the form of joint initiatives, including sensitization workshops, the design and implementation of capacity development activities, as well as studies and publications to support collaborative dialogues among relevant stakeholders and dissemination of information pertaining to the role of technology and innovation in support of the sustainable development goals and the development of sustainable ocean economy.

It is also anticipated that a dedicated stream of activities will be developed to further advance women’s empowerment and leadership in the field of deep-sea-related technology development and innovation in line with the Women in Deep-Sea Research project implemented since 2017 by ISA together with more than 20 partners.

“This agreement not only represents a strategic alignment of our objectives but also a mutual recognition of the critical role that sustainable ocean resource management plays in global environmental sustainability,” added Secretary-General Lodge.

The new partnership is expected to catalyse innovative approaches to seabed exploration and exploitation, fostering an era of enhanced collaboration that could set a benchmark for global standards in oceanic resource management.


About ISA

The International Seabed Authority (ISA) is an autonomous international organization mandated by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea to protect the seabed for the shared benefit of humankind. As a science-based organization acting as Trustee for the protection and sustainable management of the Area and its minerals, ISA is committed to the principle that all nations of the world should benefit from responsible, sustainable and regulated economic activities in the deep seabed, including deep-seabed mining. ISA works to ensure that the voices of all States and stakeholders, including developing States and civil society organizations, are effectively heard in discussions around the sustainable development of the deep seabed.


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