13/05/2015 The Negotiation Skills for Multilateral Environmental Agreements

The Regional Workshop on negotiation skills for multilateral environmental agreements (MEA) started today Monday, 11th May 2015, at the headquarters of PERSGA in Jeddah. The workshop was conducted in cooperation with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and with the participation of experts from six member countries and representatives from the Arab league. His Excellency Prof. Ziad Abu Ghararah, the Secretary General PERSGA, addressed the workshop saying that the preservation of the global environment and the adoption of a sustainable development approach have become an international demand and a collective goal that cannot be ignored. He continued to say that the world has witnessed in the past few decades, a significant increase in the number of multilateral environmental agreements, reflecting the international interest in environmental issues that cannot often be dealt with individually, but to deal with them requires joint efforts and coordination and commitment from all the countries of the world. The international community has more than seventy years of experience in the formulation of these agreements to achieve tangible priorities for safeguarding the environment and promoting the sustainable development principles. The international community has at the present time of more than 500 environmental treaties - global, regional and bilateral, that dealt with the priorities of global environmental issues like climate change, protecting the ozone layer, the conservation of biological diversity, the conservation of natural resources, the management of toxic waste and dangerous substances, the fight against desertification and the protection of wild life.

 This workshop involves more than 16 participants from the member states of the RSGA region in addition to two experts on international negotiation and this within the framework of the PERSGA's efforts to build capacity in negotiation skills for member countries as the negotiation at the international arena in the presence of representatives from different countries of the world poses a great challenge, and carry many of complexity due to the conflict of political and economical interests between the negotiating states who are seeking to achieve their national interests and serve their future plans. 

H.E the Secretary-General, added that that the practical experience and technical knowledge of the methods and processes of negotiation are limiting factors in effective participation in international environmental negotiations that can influence the output of the texts of the agreements and implementation mechanisms that go in line to serve national and regional interests and at the same time reflecting a good image of the entity represented by the negotiator.

In this regional workshop, participants will strengthen their abilities through practice of the fundamentals of negotiating through the use of "simulators" that reflect the general atmosphere of negotiation and to participate in playing real roles of the negotiators and go through practical exercises to strengthen their bargaining power. Through the lectures participants will go through the history and the evolution of the multilateral processes of the environmental diplomacy and the participants will be able through the application of simulators for negotiating to manage and enhance their capacity to built constructive dialogue in an atmosphere away from the altercations and arguments and to conduct the negotiation in a professional manner in order to save the national and regional interests.

The Regional Organization for the Conservation of the Environment in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden