EEZ Commission meet on Saba

On October 11th and 12th 2012 the marine biodiversity and fishery management in the waters of the Exclusive Economic Zone (In Dutch: Exclusieve Economische Zone EEZ) of the Kingdom in the Dutch Caribbean will be discussed on Saba. The Commission engaged with this, consists of delegates from each island of the Dutch Caribbean and of the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation (In Dutch: Ministerie van Economische Zaken, Landbouw en Innovatie – EL & I); furthermore, also the Coast Guard, the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment (In Dutch: Ministerie van Infrastructuur en Milieu – I&M) and the nature organizations are represented.


During the meeting on Saba, the monitoring of fishing on Saba and St. Eustatius started this year, will particularly be discussed and the state of the affairs with the management of the Saba Bank. The boat for the Saba Bank was recently baptized by the Director General for Nature and Region, Annemie Burger, with the name "Queen Beatrix" during her visit to the islands. The Ministry of I & M will also inform the Commission, among other things, about the organization of the response to marine pollution incidents such as oil contamination and about international agreements on the recovery of damages in such incidents.

The EEZ Committee meets twice a year, each time on a different island, to discuss the results of research on fish, coral reefs, whales and other marine life, fisheries and potential threats by human activities. On this basis, the Commission advises on possible measures to be taken for the sustainable management of natural resources in the sea.

The EEZ waters start at a distance of 12 nautical miles from the coast and are therefore not under the jurisdiction of an island, but directly under the responsibility of the Kingdom. Because the nature at sea does not comply with limits stipulated by men, it is for the sustainable and effective management of biodiversity and fisheries in the EEZ waters necessary for the management to be addressed jointly. Therefore, it has been agreed to do this together with all the islands. So far, only the islands of the Dutch Caribbean and the Netherlands have formally signed this agreement. Curaçao and Aruba have also indicated that they will do so, but they still have to formalize this. The hope is that St. Maarten will also participate. By addressing the management jointly, also joint research can be done, so that the costs can be spread.