MIDAS participation in the SPC-EU Deep Sea Minerals Regional Training Workshop in the Pacific

News date: 
June 2, 2014

On 13-16 May 2014, a regional training workshop on "Deep Sea Minerals: Financial Aspects" was held in Rarotonga. The workshop was jointly organised by the SOPAC Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) through the SPC-EU Pacific Deep Sea Minerals Project and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and hosted by the Cook Islands Government.

The workshop’s objectives were:

1. Information-sharing: to inform Pacific-ACP States’ national financial policy and law-making entities and stakeholders, in relation to DSM by providing participants with:

  • sufficient understanding of DSM deposits and operations; 
  • a realistic view of the likely financial benefits for a State engaging in DSM, and suggested mechanism for maximising and managing these sustainably;
  • case studies and suggested models for fiscal regimes and revenue management schemes, with advice on their relative merits;
  • networking opportunities between participants, experts and presenters on DSM financial issues.

2. Forward-Planning: to provide Pacific-ACP States an opportunity to assess capacity gaps in& relation to DSM financial management, and to identify opportunities for future regional working, or collaboration with third parties, to fill these gaps.

3. Regional DSM Financial Framework: to provide the DSM Project and PFTAC with a mandate and terms of reference to produce a draft Pacific Islands Regional DSM Financial Framework (for review and approval by the Pacific-ACP States, and subsequent publication).

Sybille van den Hove (left) was invited to contribute to the workshop as a representative of MIDAS. In her presentation entitled: "Integrating socio-economic and environmental aspects into decision-making about DSM" she introduced the MIDAS project and the socio-economic research done under the HERMES and HERMIONE projects. She then reflected on values, decision making under conditions of uncertainty and ignorance, irreversibilities, the precautionary principle and ethical dilemmas.

Participants included representatives from governments from Pacific Island Countries (the Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Palau, Republic of Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, and Vanuatu), representatives from other countries (New Zealand and Mauritius), NGOs, the Deep Ocean Stewardship Initiative (DOSI), academia, the private sector, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community. The workshop included an open session with Cook Islands citizens and civil society representatives.

The workshop was an opportunity for MIDAS and the SPC-EU Pacific Deep Sea Minerals Project to reinforce their links.