In the framework of the partnership between the Islamic Republic of Iran and France on ICZM, PAP/RAC joined a French delegation composed of representatives of the French Coastal Agency (Conservatoire du littoral), the Water Agency Rhone-Mediterranean-Corsica and the French Embassy in Teheran, and took part at a 4-day workshop and a field trip, from 19 to 24 September 2017. A large panel of the Iranian administrations were represented during the workshops that were organised under the patronage of the Iranian Department of Environment.
During the mission, the experts discussed the coastal and marine conservation and development issues in France and Iran. PAP/RAC offered an overview of the ICZM-related activities in the Mediterranean, including the MAP system, the ICZM Protocol, the National ICZM strategies, the CAMP projects, the local ICZM plans, the Coast Day event, the MedOpen on-line training course, etc. It is important to point out that many researches and activities dealing with ICZM are undergoing in Iran. This rich experience regards the Oman and Persian Seas, as well as the Caspian Sea. During the field trip that took place on the Caspian Sea, the French delegation had the opportunity to discover the key issues of environmental conservation and development: solid waste treatment, aquaculture, wetland management, water sanitation, reintroduction of endangered species, etc. They also had the opportunity to meet the local actors.
Perspectives for future collaborations will be further discussed between the French and Iranian delegations, with possible visits of Iranian experts to France and expertise and knowledge sharing programmes. Beyond the strengthening of bilateral cooperation, the exchanges initiated between the Department of Environment and PAP/RAC opened the door to a possible dialogue between the two Regional Seas, namely between the Barcelona Convention for the Mediterranean and the Teheran Convention for the Caspian Sea, where one of the major challenges will be the foundation of a Secretariat.