Marine Protection Service and Ocean Governance
The Marine Protection Services and Ocean Governance focus area looked at South Africa’s jurisdiction over a very large exclusive economic zone, with an extent of one and a half million square kilometres. With such a large ocean jurisdiction, effective governance is critical but will be challenging given the size and complexity of our oceans. This work stream undertook the task of developing an overarching, integrated ocean governance framework for the sustainable growth of the ocean economy. The work stream identified 10 initiatives to be implemented by 2019. These include the development and implementation of an overarching governance plan by March 2015.
The plan entails the protection of the ocean environment from all illegal activities and to promote its multiple socio-economic benefits with results by 2017. The team also proposes the delivery of a National Marine Spatial Planning Framework in order to enable a sustainable ocean economy by December 2015. In the spirit of Operation Phakisa and getting things done as quickly as possible, there is already progress on working towards an Oceans Act. We hope to have a draft Oceans Bill ready in 2015.
The Oceans Act will provide a clear foundation for marine spatial planning. Going forward, Delivery Units have been established in the lead departments that will drive the implementation of the detailed delivery plans.
The progress will be monitored on a weekly basis by the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation in The Presidency. We intend to provide regular feedback so that the public can also track progress.