As reported in the UN Environment Programme (UNEP)/Mediterranean Action Plan (MAP) Mid-Term Strategy 2016-2021, presented at the 18th Conference of the Contracting Parties, the Parties recommended to strengthen the MAP activities in the field of Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) in order to contribute to the Good Environmental Status (GES), investigate the connections between land and sea areas in more detail, and propose coherent and sustainable land- and sea-use planning frameworks related to key economic sectors and activities that may affect the coastal and marine resources.
In order to move towards this objective, a cooperation has been established to support the implementation of MSP by the Contracting Parties of the Adriatic-Ionian sub-region in a coordinated manner, by integrating provisions set out in the ICZM Protocol, the MSP Conceptual Framework and EU MSP Directive, as appropriate, and promoting, to the fullest possible extent, transboundary cooperation.
So far, this collaboration has resulted in two sub-regional meetings, as well as a technical meeting organized in Athens. The main purpose of the sub-regional meetings was to enhance discussion on this matter among the countries of the Adriatic-Ionian sub-region. The meetengs gathered representatives of all the Adriatic countries, as well as of relevant regional institutions (CNR-ISMAR, IOC-UNESCO-LME: Learn project; IUAV, WWF Adria).
This collaboration also resulted in the preparation of a study which provides indicative information on cross-border and transboundary MSP in the Adriatic-Ionian region (AIR), and on possible relevant topics for further reflection and discussion among the respective countries.