The continuous and growing use of marine resources must be coupled with the rapid growth in human knowledge associated with ocean and coastal ecosystems to ensure a proper and sustainable management of marine resources.

The economic growth in recent decades associated with marine resources has been accomplished mainly through unsustainable exploitation of many marine resources. This paradigm must be changed in order to maintain the integrity of oceans and coast areas for future generations. It is vital to secure the integrity of marine habitats and the biodiversity they support so that key ecosystem services promoting human well-being continue to be delivered.

The sustainable development of ocean and coastal ecosystems can only be achieved by addressing such challenges, thereby ensuring political commitment, exploring opportunities to benefit from across the world synergies, and establish a joint effort that involves and mobilizes all relevant stakeholders including local communities, industries and policymakers.