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Opinions & Interviews

16 Jun 2017

Belarus satisfied with results of Espoo Convention meeting in Minsk

Belarus satisfied with results of Espoo Convention meeting in Minsk

MINSK, 16 June (BelTA) – Belarus is satisfied with the results of the session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Espoo Convention in Minsk, Belarusian First Deputy Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Minister Iya Malkina told the media at a press conference during the 7th session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Espoo Convention on 16 June, BelTA has learned.

“We are very satisfied with the results of the session of the Meeting of the Parties. We have had many interesting discussions both on procedural and practical issues in Minsk,” Iya Malkina said.

She pointed out that the majority of the delegations had an opportunity to discuss many issues, including those related to the impact of the Espoo Convention on the progress towards the sustainable development goals and the implementation of the international climate change agreements both in bilateral and multilateral format. “The participants considered draft provisions of the Minsk declaration. In general, as the organizers of this event, we are glad that most of the delegations found an opportunity to present their viewpoints and get feedback,” Iya Malkina emphasized.

The first deputy natural resources and environmental protection minister noted that the Belarusian side is satisfied with the vibrant discussion that was observed throughout the conference. “It is important for us that the adoption of the Minsk declaration will make part of history. It is a truly important event for the Meeting of the Parties as it provides for sharing practices developed by 45 countries with other states, expanding the competences of environmental impact assessment and strategic environmental assessment into various sectors of economic activity, and of course strengthening the role of environmental assessment with respect to planned activities for different countries,” Iya Malkina noted.

The seventh session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Espoo Convention is running in Minsk on 13-16 June. About 200 people representing 45 countries parties to the Espoo Convention are taking part in the events. Among them are ministers and deputy ministers of environmental protection ministries and other agencies, high-ranking officials of international organizations and financial institutions, and members of the public.

The Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context was adopted in Espoo, Finland on 25 February 1991 to come into force on 10 September 1997. It has been ratified by 45 countries. The Espoo Convention obliges the signatories to carry out an environmental impact assessment of certain activities at an early stage of planning. It also lays down general obligations of the parties to the Convention to notify and consult each other on all major projects under consideration if such projects are likely to adversely affect the environment beyond national borders.

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