Cuba and the United States sign a memorandum of understanding on marine and coastal ecosystems

In order to strengthen cooperation in the conservation of marine ecosystems, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the non-governmental organization The Ocean Foundation of the United States and the Institute of Science, Technology and the Environment (CITMA) of Cuba.

The agreement, signed by Chargé d’Affaires ai of the Cuban Embassy in the United States, Lianis Torres Rivera, and Oceans Foundation President Mark J. Spaulding, will create opportunities for cooperation in marine research.

The document also calls for the implementation of climate change adaptation actions, such as restoring mangrove areas and reducing wear and tear on coral reef crests.

At the time of the signing, the head of the Cuban Mission in Washington expressed CITMA’s satisfaction with the signing of this new document, which is added to agreements with federal agencies allowing bilateral scientific cooperation.

Torres Rivera also noted that this Memorandum represents an achievement towards restoring beneficial cooperation relations for both countries.

The diplomat stressed that this agreement is the result of several decades of work between the Ocean Foundation and various research institutions in Cuba.

The impact of the blockade on this sector has limited opportunities to acquire resources for environmental protection and to develop joint maritime research between the government agencies of both countries. This memorandum represents what Cuba and the US can achieve if they work together, Torres Rivera said.

For his part, Mark J. Spaulding said the US organization maintains its three-decade-long commitment to using science as a bridge to protect shared marine resources.

We are confident that agreements like this can lay the groundwork for closer collaboration between our governments in ocean and coastal sciences, Spaulding added.

Although the memorandum is not a binding agreement, it sets out the prerequisites for a relationship of mutual cooperation between neighboring countries sharing common sea areas and ecosystems.

Cuba and the United States signed a joint declaration on November 24, 2015 to protect the marine and coastal biodiversity of the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico.

Source: Juventud Rebelde


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