The conference was held as part of the Year of the Environment in Russia and as part of Russia’s presidency of the Council of the Baltic Sea States in 2013.
Statement of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Baltic Sea States for Environmental Protection of the Baltic Sea
At the invitation of the Prime Minister of the Russian Federation, heads of government and high-ranking representatives of the Kingdom of Denmark, the Republic of Estonia, the Republic of Finland, the Federal Republic of Germany, the Republic of Iceland, the Republic of Latvia, the Republic of Lithuania, the Kingdom of Norway, the Republic of Poland, the Kingdom of Sweden and the European Union together with businesses and non-governmental organisations gathered at the Conference of Heads of Government of the Baltic Sea States for Environmental Protection of the Baltic Sea in St Petersburg on April 5-6, 2013 in order to assess progress in achieving the common goal of preserving the Baltic Sea environment, and to identify additional ways to strengthen cooperation in the interests of its sustainable development, including public-private partnership in the sphere of environmental protection of the Baltic Sea region.
The economic development of the Baltic Sea region should be environmentally responsible. The priceless inheritance of the Baltic Sea ecosystem should be protected, preserved and restored where practicable. Eventually, the Baltic Sea should be clean, healthy and productive.
The conference participants reaffirmed the importance and intrinsic value of the process started by the Baltic Sea Action Summit (BSAS) in 2010 in Helsinki with the participation of heads of state and government of the countries of the Baltic region, the European Commission, the business community and non-governmental organisations, and of the commitments adopted at the summit to preserve the environment of the Baltic Sea. The participants praised the work performed by the Baltic Sea Action Group (BSAG) and its contribution to launching the BSAS process.
The conference participants noted the importance of the existing mechanisms of cooperation in the Baltic Sea region and reaffirmed the role of the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS) as the main political forum for intergovernmental cooperation and dialogue in the region.
The conference participants stressed the key role of the Convention on the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Baltic Sea Area and its governing body – the Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission (HELCOM) – as a platform for improving cooperation between the countries of the Baltic Sea region and the driving force for the ecosystem approach. They have fully supported further implementation of the HELCOM Action Plan for the Baltic Sea and welcomed the forthcoming HELCOM Ministerial Session to be held in Copenhagen on October 3, 2013.
Press release from: Government of the Russian Federation 8. April 2013