Information Officer I (Ag.)
Department of Information and Public Relations
The new Marine Estate Administration Policy has now been updated and published.
The Marine Estate Administration Policy updates the guidance used by the Ministry of Natural Resources, Labour and Immigration since 1996 for the issuance of licences, permits and leases for the use of the seabed.
Minister for Natural Resources, Labour and Immigration Honourable Vincent Wheatley said, “The updating of this policy is crucial to achieving our goal of sustainable development in the Territory. The balance between resource management and economic and ecological development should go hand in hand; this policy greatly aids us in that regard.”
Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Natural Resources, Labour and Immigration Mr. Joseph Smith-Abbott said, “The updated guidelines for the use of seabed for moorings, jetties and reclamations aim to ensure that we balance the genuine aspirations for economic development while we conserve the natural resources of our Territory. The Ministry will now be guided by the updated policy.”
The Policy is founded on four (4) main values which are equity, balance, fairness, and transparency.
- The principle of equity aims to ensure that future generations can inherit a clean and healthy environment that is not harmful to their health.
- In making decisions, balance is sought to ensure that those natural resources are maintained at an ecologically sustainable level while promoting justifiable economic and social development.
- Objectives of fairness aim to ensure that all stakeholders adhere to the principles and procedures as stated in the policy.
- Transparency addresses all aspects of decision making with clear and consistent guidelines and ongoing administration of the marine estate.
The guidelines should guide the public regarding how applications for use of the seabed will be considered.
The Marine Estate Administration Policy can be accessed on the Government’s website using the following link: https://bvi.gov.vg/environment
The Ministry of Natural Resources, Labour and Immigration continues to administer the natural resources of the Territory in a manner that ensures long term sustainability.
NOTES TO EDITORS
Link to Marine Estate Administration Policy: https://bvi.gov.vg/environment
Photo 1: Official photo of Minister for Natural Resources, Labour and Immigration Honourable Vincent Wheatley