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IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC)

Advancing knowledge and cooperation for a healthy ocean and prosperous society

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First WESTPAC Marine Spatial Planning Expert Workshop

14 Nov 2023 @ 8:00 am - 15 Nov 2023 @ 5:00 pm UTC+8


Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) is a comprehensive and strategic process to allocate the rational use of marine space and the interactions among its uses to minimize the conflicts between human activities and balance the economic development and environmental protection. It is an enabler to addressing climate change, optimizing marine conservation, and developing the blue economy as well as a major contribution to the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030), also known as the “Ocean Decade”, adopted by the 72nd UN General Assembly on 5 December 2017.

MSP has gained increasing attention from the Western Pacific countries, but its development in most of countries and adjacent areas are still at the early stage. Considering the pressing demands of IOC Member States in the region for marine management and sustainable use of resources, the IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC) initiated an Ocean Decade Action “Accelerate Marine Spatial Planning in the Western Pacific”, which was officially registered as UN 21 project in 2022. The project strives to capitalize on the MSPglobal Initiative and its results, and provide guidelines to the countries in the region to reach their environmental, social and economic objectives with an ecosystem-based approach and promote the development of their MSP plans. 

In this context, with the aim to promote the implementation and engagement in the UN21 project and accelerate the MSP process in the Western Pacific and its adjacent areas, IOC/WESTPAC was determined to convene a group of experts to provide policy and technical insights, assistance and support to facilitate the MSP development in the region. Upon the approval by the 14th Intergovernmental Session of IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC-XIV) and based on the recommendations from the member states, the Group of Experts (GoE) in Marine Spatial Planning in the Western Pacific has been established.


The first MSP Expert Meeting will rally wisdom and expertise to push forward the implementation of the Ocean Decade Action UN21 “Accelerate Marine Spatial Planning in the Western Pacific” and facilitate cooperation and communication on regional, national and local MSP efforts/processes/initiatives.

The specific objectives of the meeting are to:

  1. Share progress, experience, lessons learned and issues in the MSP implementation in different countries in the region.
  2. Brainstorming discussions on the science and technology, capacity development and cooperative mechanism framework of MSP in the region.
  3. Discuss the next steps of MSP work in the region.
Tuesday 14 November 2023
  • Opening Remarks
  • Self-introduction of participants
09:50-10:20Group photo & Coffee break 
10:20-11:40Setting the scene 
  • Setting the scene
Wenxi Zhu
  • MSP matters: An overview about MSP development status
Zhiwei Zhang
  • MSProadmap and MSPglobal project 1.0 & 2.0
Michele Quesada da Silva
  • UN 21: Accelerating MSP in the region
Zhiwei Zhang
  • Role of Foundation in the MSP development
Xinchun Pan
11:40-12:00Country/Institutional Report on MSP Status 
  • Korea: Recent Trends of MSP Policy and Technology in Korea
Moon-Suk LEE
12:00-13:30Lunch break 
13:30-15:30Country/Institutional Report on MSP Status 
  • Japan: Marine Spatial Planning in Japan
Kazumi Wakita
  • Malaysia: MSP in Malaysia: Challenges and Way Forward
Sazlina Salleh & Nurfatin Wahida Puspa
  • Indonesia: MSP in Indonesia
  • Pacific island countries: Marine Spatial Planning in the Pacific: Opportunities and Challenges
Arpana Pratap
  • Thailand: National Marine Spatial Planning Initiative and capacity building needs for Thailand
Sakanan Plathong
  • Vietnam: MSP in Viet Nam: Opportunities and Challenges
Pham Van Lam
15:30-16:00Coffee break 
  • China: MSP in China: Experiences, Opportunities and Challenges
Xiao Yang & Xin Teng
  • International partners: COBSEA’s Marine and Coastal Spatial Planning (Video)
Margarita Victoria Caballa

Brainstorming Discussions

  • Science and Technology:  What MSP techniques or tools still need to be developed in your country or the region?
Wenxi Zhu & All
Wednesday 15 November2023

Brainstorming Discussions

  • Capacity Development Aspects of MSP Development in Indonesia: Scientific Perspectives
  • Capacity development: In addition to the ongoing CD efforts, what else capacity development activities need to be developed (Each will be expected to contribute ideas and suggestions. 2 or 3 slides each would be great)
  • Introduction of MSP Challenge

Wenxi Zhu & All

  • Ario Damar
  • Michele Quesada da Silva
10:30-11:00Coffee break 

Brainstorming Discussions

  • Cooperative mechanism, framework, and opportunities for MSP development in the region
Wenxi Zhu & All

Brainstorming Discussions

  • Pilot and demonstration activities (Each will be expected to consider what pilot and demonstration activities could be planned and conducted in this Action)
Wenxi Zhu & All
12:00-13:30Lunch break 

Brainstorming Discussions

  • Development of a regional MSP roadmap?
Wenxi Zhu & All
15:00-15:30Coffee break 
15:30-16:00Conclusion, next steps and closingWenxi Zhu


14 Nov 2023 @ 8:00 am UTC+8
15 Nov 2023 @ 5:00 pm UTC+8
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