Recognizing the growing interconnectedness of environmental challenges, NOWPAP engages in issue-based collaboration with major stakeholders, including other Regional Seas programmes, regional and global multilateral partners, national institutions based on common principles and values and the shared goal of marine and coastal conservation.

Strengthening regional cooperation through partnership-building and resource mobilization is one of the major priorities of the NOWPAP Medium-term Strategy (MTS) 2018-2023. MTS 2018-2023 aims to strengthen and, where necessary, upgrade all core NOWPAP functions - environmental assessment, management and policy advice as well as institutional and financial arrangements – while moving towards further integration of various activities, operational integration between the four Regional Activity Centres and a stronger coordinating role for the Regional Coordinating Unit. NOWPAP will further align its activities with regional and global priorities and institutions, while expanding its partnership base. Communications and outreach are an integral part of this priority area.

These activities correspond to Tasks (b), (d) and (e) of Objective 5 of the NOWPAP Action Plan, while also contributing to the achievement of several targets of SDG 17: Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development.

NOWPAP regional and global partners

NOWPAP is a member of the UNEP Regional Seas Programme and signed the Agreement of Cooperation between UNEP and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in 2014. It is also a non-country partner or collaborator of the following regional institutions: the North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES) (ex-officio member of several thematic groups); non-country partner of the Partnerships in Environmental Management for the Seas of East Asia (PEMSEA); partner in the North-East Asian Subregional Programme for Environmental Cooperation (NEASPEC); partner in the Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC) of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO); partner of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)/Global Environment Facility (GEF) Yellow Sea LME Project Phase II; and partner in the Coordinating Body for the Seas of East Asia (COBSEA). NOWPAP works on marine litter issues closely with the Tripartite Environmental Ministers Meeting (TEMM).

NOWPAP activities are implemented by a wide network of experts and institutions in the NOWPAP Member States.

Chinese Research Academy  of Environmental Sciences (CRAES)

Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC)

Korea Marine Environment Management Corporation (KOEM)

National Institute of Fisheries Science of Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries, Republic of Korea

Biodiversity Conservation Center, Russian Federation


Our Global and Regional Partners

Tripartite Environment Ministers Meeting among China, Japan and Korea (TEMM)

The environment ministers of the three countries have been holding the Tripartite Environment Ministers Meeting among China, Japan and Korea (TEMM) on annual basis since 1999. Within this framework, the three countries aim to promote environmental management, to take a leading role in regional environmental management, and also to contribute to global environmental improvement.

Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD)

The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), known informally as the Biodiversity Convention, is a multilateral treaty. The Convention has three main goals including:

  • the conservation of biological diversity (or biodiversity);
  • the sustainable use of its components;
  • and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from genetic resources.

In other words, its objective is to develop national strategies for the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity. It is often seen as the key document regarding sustainable development. The Convention was opened for signature at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro on 5 June 1992 and entered into force on 29 December 1993. At the 2010 10th Conference of Parties (COP) to the Convention on Biological Diversity in October in Nagoya, Japan, the Nagoya Protocol was adopted.

Coordinating Body on the Seas of East Asia (COBSEA)

The Action Plan for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment and Coastal Areas of the East Asian Seas Region (the East Asian Seas Action Plan) was approved in 1981 stimulated by concerns on the effects and sources of marine pollution. Initially, the action plan involved five countries (Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand). In 1994, it was revised to involve another five countries (Australia, Cambodia, People's Republic of China, Republic of Korea and Vietnam) and up to this date the action plan has nine participating countries (Australia is no longer a participating country). The main components of East Asian Seas Action Plan are assessment of the effects of human activities on the marine environment, control of coastal pollution, protection of mangroves, seagrasses and coral reefs, and waste management.

Global Programme of Action (GPA)

The GPA is the only global intergovernmental mechanism directly addressing the connectivity between terrestrial, freshwater, coastal and marine ecosystems.

It aims to be a source of conceptual and practical guidance to be drawn upon by national and/or regional authorities for devising and implementing sustained action to prevent, reduce, control and/or eliminate marine degradation from land-based activities.

UNEP hosts the GPA Coordinating Unit and coordinates some activities in support of the programme. Intergovernmental Review Meetings are organized every 5 years to review the progress made by countries in the implementation of the GPA through their respective National Action Plans.

International Environmental Technology Center (IETC)

The mandate of IETC, as agreed in Decision 16/34 of UNEP Governing Council, is the transfer of environmentally sound technologies (EST) to developing countries and countries with economies in transition. This was reinforced by the GC’s adoption of the Bali Strategic Plan for Technology Support and Capacity-building in its 23rd Session in February 2005.

IETC's efforts in the field of waste management are projected towards 4 directions:

  • Demonstration / Pilot projects
  • Technology support
  • Capacity building
  • Secretariat of the Global Partnership for Waste Management (GPWM)

International Maritime Organization (IMO)

IMO – the International Maritime Organization – is the United Nations specialized agency with responsibility for the safety and security of shipping and the prevention of marine pollution by ships. A​​s a specialized agency of the United Nations, IMO is the global standard-setting authority for the safety, security and environmental performance of international shipping. Its main role is to create a regulatory framework for the shipping industry that is fair and effective, universally adopted and universally implemented. Shipping is an essential component of any programme for future sustainable economic growth. Through IMO, the Organization’s Member States, civil society and the shipping industry are already working together to ensure a continued and strengthened contribution towards a green economy and growth in a sustainable manner. The promotion of sustainable shipping and sustainable maritime development is one of the major priorities of IMO in the coming years. Energy efficiency, new technology and innovation, maritime education and training, maritime security, maritime traffic management and the development of the maritime infrastructure: the development and implementation, through IMO, of global standards covering these and other issues will underpin IMO's commitment to provide the institutional framework necessary for a green and sustainable global maritime transportation system.​ 

IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC)

The IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC), an Intergovernmental Scientific Organization, was established in 1989 by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (IOC/UNESCO) to promote international cooperation and to coordinate programmes in marine research, ocean observations and services, as well as capacity building in the Western Pacific and adjacent seas, in order to learn more about the nature and resources of the ocean and coastal areas and to apply that knowledge for the improvement of governance, sustainable development and protection of the marine environment. WESTPAC currently consists of 22 Member States mainly in East Asia, Southeast Asia, South Pacific and the eastern Indian Ocean, with its membership open to all interested Member States of IOC/UNESCO willing to participate actively in the work of the Sub-Commission.

North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES)

The North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES), an intergovernmental scientific organization, was established in 1992 to promote and coordinate marine research in the northern North Pacific and adjacent seas. Its present members are Canada, Japan, People's Republic of China, Republic of Korea, the Russian Federation, and the United States of America. FUTURE (Forecasting and Understanding Trends, Uncertainty and Responses of North Pacific Marine Ecosystems ) is an integrative Scientific Program undertaken by the member nations and affiliates of PICES to understand how marine ecosystems in the North Pacific respond to climate change and human activities, to forecast ecosystem status based on a contemporary understanding of how nature functions, and to communicate new insights to its members, governments, stakeholders and the public.

North-East Asian Subregional Programme for Environmental Corporation (NEASPEC)

North-East Asian Subregional Programme for Environmental Cooperation (NEASPEC) is a comprehensive intergovernmental cooperation framework addressing environmental challenges in North-East Asia.

As a follow-up to the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development held in 1992, NEASPEC was established in 1993 by six member States -  China, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Japan, Mongolia, Republic of Korea, the Russian Federation - to promote environmental cooperation in the subregion.

North-East Asian countries have been increasingly exposed to environmental problems coupled with the rapid economic growth of the recent decades. As the subregional cooperation framework, NEASPEC aims to redress the dichotomy between economic growth and environmental protection to improve environmental sustainability of the subregion.

Partnerships in Environmental Management for the Seas of East Asia (PEMSEA)

Partnerships in Environmental Management for the Seas of East Asia (PEMSEA) is an intergovernmental organization operating in East Asia to foster and sustain healthy and resilient oceans, coasts, communities and economies across the region. The 2006 Haikou Partnership Agreement established PEMSEA as the region's coordinating mechanism for the implementation the Sustainable Development Strategy for the Seas of East Asia (SDS-SEA). PEMSEA carries out this mandate through these operating mechanisms: East Asian Seas (EAS) Congress held every three years, East Asian Seas (EAS) Partnership Council, a regular body that provides the policy and operational guidance for the progress of the implementation of the SDS-SEA, and PEMSEA Resource Facility (PRF) that supports SDS-SEA implementation.

UNDP/GEF Yellow Sea LME Phase II Project

The project goal is to achieve adaptive ecosystem-based management of the Yellow Sea Large Marine Ecosystem (YSLME) by fostering long-term sustainable institutional, policy and financial arrangements in accordance with the YSLME Strategic Action Programme (SAP).