History of EAS Congress

The Haikou Partnership Agreement on the Implementation of the Sustainable Development Strategy for the Seas of East Asia (SDS-SEA) signed by the 11 East Asian Seas Countries during the Second Ministerial Forum at Haikou City, China, in December 2006 adopted the East Asian Seas (EAS) Congress as one of the four major operating mechanisms of PEMSEA.

Key Features of the EAS Congress 

Ministerial Forum

The Ministerial Forum is composed of the Ministers of the relevant government agencies or PEMSEA focal agencies in the East Asian Seas countries. The Ministerial Forum provides policy directions and commitments for improving and strengthening the implementation of the SDS-SEA.

International Conference
The International Conference features plenary and parallel sessions on key thematic areas on seas and ocean ranging from research, threats and challenges, innovations, policy, and solutions. It is open to the participation of various stakeholders within and outside the East Asian Seas region including policymakers, local and national government representatives, resource and economic managers, scientists, members of the academe, private or business sector, youth and community representatives, development organizations, and funding institutions.

The exhibition is conducted parallel to the International Conference. It showcases innovative solutions, approaches, and good practices contributing to the sustainable development of seas and coasts within the region and globally. The exhibit is closely linked to the International Conference workshops and seminars and provides an interactive venue during the EAS Congress.

Youth Forum
The Youth Forum is composed of youth (aged 21 to 35) from the countries in the East Asian Seas region. The Youth Forum provides a venue for the youth to share their experiences, learn more about the issues on coastal and marine environment, and identify areas where youth can play a significant role and contribution in the sustainable development of coasts and seas in the region. This year’s Youth Forum will be conducted as a pre-Congress event on 15-19 April 2024, in partnership with the Korean National Ocean Science Museum in Uljin City, Korea.

Partnership Night
The Partnership Night is one of the social events of the EAS Congress that provides the partners and all participants of the EAS Congress an opportunity to get together in an informal setting and celebrate the accomplishments of the collaborations established in line with the implementation of the SDS-SEA. The Partnership Night also serves as the venue to recognize outstanding individuals, learning sites, and local governments and organizations for their contribution to the SDS-SEA and meeting the criteria on PEMSEA certified codes (i.e., ICM Code, PSHEM Code).

PEMSEA Network of Local Governments Annual Forum
The PEMSEA Network of Local Governments (PNLG) Annual Forum is the yearly gathering of PNLG members to discuss the governance and operational aspects of the network and hold a learning event on PNLG members’ experiences, best practices, and innovative ways to address persistent and emerging challenges besetting local governments in their coastal and marine management and development.

PEMSEA Network of Learning Centers General Assembly
In the year of the EAS Congress, the PEMSEA Network of Learning Centers (PNLC) hold their general assembly as one of its side events, convening learning centers and regional centres of excellence from the East Asian Seas region for a joint learning event with PNLG.