16 Feb 2022
Cabinet has adopted South Africa’s negotiating mandate on the draft resolution on an internationally legally binding instrument on plastic pollution to be tabled at the resumed 5th session of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA 5.2) scheduled to take place in Nairobi, Kenya, from 28 February – 2 March 2022.
South Africa is in support of addressing the issue of marine litter and plastic pollution in line with the position proposed by the African continent.
Our country is in support of mandating the Executive Director of UNEA to establish an Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC) under UNEA to negotiate an internationally legally binding instrument on plastic pollution given the environmental challenges faced as a consequence of plastic pollution.
The Resolution, which was originally sponsored by Rwanda and Peru, also proposes provisions that should be addressed by such an internationally legally binding instrument on plastic pollution namely:
South Africa will also, in addition to these provisions listed above, request for the inclusion of the recognition of the special needs and circumstances of Africa and that the internationally legally binding global agreement on plastics pollution must include the principles of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities in light of national circumstances.
South Africa will also stress the need for new, additional and predictable finance, including technology transfer, development and deployment as well as capacity building to support developing countries, in particular Africa for its implementation.