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Blue Prosperity Newsletter - February 2023

Updated: Mar 8, 2023


Image: Vanuatu Government members including Hon. Prime Minister Ishmael Kalsakau, Hon. Minister Ralph Regenvanu, Hon. Minister Meltek Sato Kilman Livtuvanu, Hon. Minister Matai Seremaiah Nawalu, and Hon. Minister Tom Kerr Netvunei; Futuna Custom dancers; and Waitt Institute and Foundation members including Founder and Chairman Ted Waitt, Michele Waitt, Cherie Prothro-Shea, Kathryn Mengerink, Taholo Kami, Tom Grueskin, Cory Pukini, Alison Rowe, and Ellen Spooner.

We are thrilled to announce our new partnership with the Government of the Republic of Vanuatu to implement 100% sustainable ocean management and fully protect at least 30% of Vanuatu’s waters, while supporting blue economy, sustainable fisheries, scientific research, and outreach.

Honorable Prime Minister Kalsakau and Mr. Ted Waitt signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Feb. 17th, launching the Blue Prosperity Vanuatu program. The Republic of Vanuatu is a longstanding leader in ocean conservation in the Pacific and released the Pacific region’s first National Ocean Policy in 2016.


Image: Ted Waitt, Founder and Chairman of the Waitt Institute shakes hands with Honorable Sitiveni Rabuka, Prime Minister of the Republic of Fiji.

Honorable Prime Minister Rabuka reaffirmed Fiji's commitment to sustainably manage 100% of Fiji’s ocean space while fully protecting at least 30% in Marine Protected Areas. The Prime Minister formally supported the partnership with the Waitt Institute, re-committing to the Memorandum of Understanding on February 15, 2023.

The Waitt team is honored to partner with the new Fijian Government to support their vision for the future of Fiji’s ocean through sustainable ocean management.

Blue Prosperity Fiji aims to responsibly sustainably grow Fiji’s ocean industries such as tourism and fisheries while protecting and restoring ocean habitats. The program will incorporate community and stakeholder engagement, scientific research, traditional knowledge, and coordination with government agencies and existing NGOs.


Image: Karen Stone, Executive Director of VEPA; Kathryn Mengerink, JD, PhD, Executive Director of the Waitt Institute, Tuikolongahau Halafiji PhD, CEO for the Ministry of Fisheries, and Laura Frank, Assistant Director of the Waitt Institute.

The Ministry of Fisheries in Tonga renewed its memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Vava’u Environmental Protection Association (VEPA), and the Waitt Institute on February 7, 2023 with the goal of managing Tonga’s waters for sustainability, profitability, and enjoyment.

This MOU demonstrates the ongoing commitment of the Ministry of Fisheries to support healthier ecosystems, improved fishing catches, strengthened coastal livelihoods, improved climate resilience, and climate smart marine management practices in Tonga’s waters. The shared objectives of the partnership will support the ongoing development, fishery benefits, and management effectiveness of Tonga’s Special Management Areas.

Our Ocean 2023

Members of the Waitt Institute and Blue Prosperity Coalition look forward to attending the upcoming Our Ocean 2023 Conference in Panama on March 2-3. Please let us know if you plan to attend, we hope to see you there!


Image: Waitt Institute members Robin Ramdeen and Emily Stokes with Emanuel Gonçalves, PhD Chief Scientist at Oceano Azul Foundation.

Members of the Waitt Institute team and Blue Prosperity Coalition were present at the Fifth International Marine Protected Areas Congress (IMPAC5) in Vancouver, Canada to meet with partners, exchange knowledge and gather best practices for implementing marine protection around the world.

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