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Canadian Minister Gail Shea and SOA Administrator Sun Zhihui sign a renewed MOU. (Photo: DFO)

DFO signs ocean science cooperation agreement with China

Click on the flag for more information about Canada CANADA
Tuesday, October 05, 2010, 21:50 (GMT + 9)

Canadian minister of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) Gail Shea and Administrator of the Chinese State Oceanic Administration (SOA), Sun Zhihui, have signed a renewed memorandum of understanding (MOU) on ocean cooperation between SOA and DFO in Ottawa.

“The year 2010 marks the 40th anniversary of bilateral relations between Canada and China. What better way for us to renew and reaffirm this growing relationship than by signing this Memorandum of Understanding on ocean science cooperation,” said Minister Shea.

“Canada and China share a common interest in healthy and productive oceans, and through this agreement, we will be better able to pool our research efforts to better understand and address the challenges that face our oceans. Both of our countries are world leaders in ocean science research and I look forward to a long and productive relationship between Canada and China,” added the Minister.

As part of Minister Shea’s visit to Beijing in January 2010, DFO and SOA launched a process to develop this agreement to help address the challenges facing the oceans. Key research areas for joint projects include marine climate, marine pollution, marine environmental protection and fish habitat protection.

Under this agreement, Canadian and Chinese scientists will be able to share facilities and equipment and pursue collaborative research projects on deep sea biodiversity, oceanography and control of marine invasive species.

In addition to facilitating collaborative work and the exchange of scientific information between Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the State Oceanic Administration, the MOU provides for cooperative science that will support an ecosystem approach to oceans management. The goal is to understand how to maintain ocean ecosystems in healthy and productive condition, while allowing for sustainable use of the goods and services they provide.

Also as a result of Minister Shea’s 2010 visit to Beijing, Fisheries and Oceans Canada is working with the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) to finalize an MOU on fisheries cooperation between the two organizations. This agreement, once signed, will further strengthen their relationship and advance issues of common interest related to fisheries cooperation. This agreement is expected to be completed later in the fall of 2010.

En route to Ottawa, the Chinese delegation had the opportunity to visit and be briefed on the work of DFO’s Bedford Institute of Oceanography in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada’s largest centre for ocean research.

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