Hamilton, Bermuda, August 25, 2022 - "I am excited to advance the Blue Prosperity Plan," said the Deputy Premier and Minister of Home Affairs, the Hon. Walter Roban, JP, MP, following today's announcement in Cabinet. "It outlines the first steps for Bermuda to become a global leader and a hub for investment in sustainable industries."
Introduced by Deputy Premier and Minister of Home Affa
irs, the Hon. Walter Roban, JP, MP, the Draft Blue Prosperity Plan outlines a pathway to growing Bermuda's ocean economy while protecting and restoring the island's ocean spaces for present and future generations.
The Draft Blue Prosperity Plan has two components: the Blue Economy Strategy, a guideline for growing Bermuda's ocean-related industries and attracting investment opportunities; and the Marine Spatial Plan, a framework for implementing sustainable ocean development, protection, and management. This Draft Blue Prosperity Plan uses the best available science and builds from extensive input from the Government of Bermuda, the local scientific community, stakeholder groups, and the Bermudian public.
Deputy Premier and Minister of Home Affairs, the Hon. Walter H. Roban, JP, MP, explained, "In Bermuda, there is untapped potential among sustainable ocean industries for economic growth, infrastructure development, and job creation. The Draft Blue Prosperity Plan, a strategy developed in partnership with the Bermuda Ocean Prosperity Programme (BOPP), will foster the sustainable, profitable, and enjoyable use of our ocean resources."
"Our plan proposes the development of a Blue Investment Facility, which would attract and manage investments and provide new revenue streams and career opportunities for Bermudians."
Before formal adoption, the Government will undertake an extensive public consultation on the Draft Blue Prosperity Plan to give the public every opportunity to be involved in the process. In the coming months, a series of virtual and in-person community engagement events will be held across the island. Individuals can also join one of the six stakeholder groups representing the needs and perspectives of Bermuda's ocean users and submit feedback through the Government's Citizens Forum website beginning September 12, 2022.
BOPP is a community-driven program representing a partnership between the Government of Bermuda, the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences, and the Waitt Institute. The Programme aims to responsibly develop Bermuda's Blue Economy to diversify national revenue through the coordinated management of Bermuda's blue assets, including marine resources and ocean-related industries. This includes developing a marine spatial plan that designates complete protection for 20% of Bermuda's waters, creating 90,000km2 of marine protected areas, and working to improve fisheries management, where appropriate.
“BIOS is committed to providing the Bermuda Ocean Prosperity Programme and the people of Bermuda with the best available scientific data to support the Blue Prosperity Plan," said William Curry, president and CEO of BIOS. "The Blue Economy Strategy is designed to promote local investment in ocean and climate technologies, which is also an opportunity to change the broader economy and situate Bermuda as a solutions-oriented partner in those fields.”
Founder and chairman of the Waitt Institute, Ted Waitt, and his team from the Waitt Institute traveled to Bermuda in July to support the presentation of the Draft Plan to Cabinet. "Bermuda is already forging the path as a leader in innovative and sustainable solutions for the ocean," Waitt said. "This is Bermuda's plan, and we are honored to assist with funding, technical assistance, and capacity to support Bermuda's vision for its ocean."