The Northern Mozambique Channel (NMC) region is one of worlds outstanding marine biodiversity areas and a biological reservoir for all East African coastal areas. The biological and conservation values of the NMC area are of global importance with superlative coastal coral reefs, mangroves and seagrasses, and pelagic systems supporting whales, turtles, sharks, tuna, seabirds and other migratory species.
The economic potential of the NMC is emerging as a future driver of national and regional development on a scale not previously realized in East Africa, due to its high productivity, recent findings of globally significant natural gas deposits, and a high potential for coastal tourism. Demographic change and population growth in the NMC region (rising to 20 million, by 2040) will increase demands for and pressures on resources, while at the same time providing opportunities for economic growth and building prosperity.
The Northern Mozambique Channel initiative is an emerging partnership of countries, civil society and the private sector, whose goal is to deliver a sustainable blue economy that preserves and builds its wealth across the natural, social, and economic capitals, within the central vision that by 2050, the people, countries and economies of the Northern Mozambique Channel prosper in a sustainable future founded on the natural and cultural assets and diversity of the region.
The promotion of integrated ocean governance (through the use of Marine Spatial Planning-MSP) and sustainable principles and standards for key economic sectors (in particular oil and gas extraction) are the two main focus areas for WWF and partners. Each country in the NMC area will be supported to build multi-actor and multi-sector collaborations and partnerships, allowing for an effective integrated approach to marine and coastal resources and coordinated use of marine space. The SDG 14 Summit will be used as a stepping stone towards a regionally-owned vision and approach, whereby WWF is supporting countries to develop national commitments, as well as joint commitments to be delivered by countries of the sub-region at the Conference. WWF is furthermore actively developing partnerships and undertaking fundraising around the initiative.
Public-private partnerships and funding to support the countries, institutions and partners in implementing the regional vision for the NMC area in a coherent manner have been secured
A regional IOM/MSP framework for the NMC has been developed and validated by countries and partners through a multi-stakeholder process
Effective planning is promoted and best practices in the oil and gas sector are adopted by Governments and private sector champions, leading to mitigation of impacts of the sector to the natural assets and communities in the NMC.