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Seychelles to co-chair first international working group meeting towards plastic waste partnership in 2020 |14 November 2019

Seychelles is to co-chair the first international working group meeting on plastics early next year, after cabinet approved the proposal put forward by the Ministry of Environment, Energy and Climate Change (MEECC) earlier this month.

The meeting stems from a resolution by member states at the 14th meeting of the Conference of Parties (COP14) of the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Waste and their disposal, to establish a plastic waste partnership comprising different member states towards managing plastic waste in an environmentally sound manner.

The proposed partnership is designed as an international vehicle for public-private cooperation to minimise and more effectively manage plastic waste and tasks include collecting information and undertaking analysis on environmental, economic and social impacts of national and regional policy frameworks and strategies relevant to plastic waste prevention and management, to inform stakeholders about the development of policy, regulation and strategies on the prevention and minimisation of plastic wastes as well as to transfer knowledge, experiences and information. 

The meeting, which will group together at least 150 participants from different states, organisations, private sector organisations and civil society, seeks to get the ball rolling on discussions on how to implement an action plan in relation to the plastic issues being faced by the world. It will be co-chaired by Norway and will cover numerous aspects pertaining to the action plan, policy formulation, plastic waste management solutions at national, regional and international level as well, as public-private cooperation towards improved management of plastic wastes.

Principal secretary for Environment Alain de Comarmond noted that Seychelles forms part of three Conventions, notably, the Basel Convention’s Plastic Waste, Rotterdam Convention and Stockholm Convention, pertaining to chemicals, pollution and waste.

“Of course, Seychelles was considered and appointed based on its actions in relation to plastics, our restrictions in place and the fact that Seychelles is directly affected by external factors, outside our country for instance marine debris and the sheer amount of plastic waste which washes ashore on our outer islands,” PS de Comarmond said.

“The first meeting will be co-chaired by Norway and is an important position for us. It is not only the government who will be involved but we are also required to involve civil society in Seychelles. As we know, our non-governmental organisations are very active in terms of plastics getting involved with beach clean-ups and such activities and they will therefore be involved and have an active role in the co-chairing. It is a very important meeting and Seychelles, as a member of the working group, can actively and directly participate in the discussion as to how the world deals with the plastic problem,” PS de Comarmond noted.


Laura Pillay

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