• July 30, 2021

Yesterday, 29 July 2021, Ukraine and the Kingdom of Belgium have concluded the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the Field of Water Protection and Restoration and Rational Water Resources. The document was signed by the Belgian Federal Science Policy Office, the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, and the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources of Ukraine.

By this Memorandum, the Belgium party confirms its readiness to provide a research vessel “Belgica” to Ukraine free of charge. The vessel is built in 1984, in the operational state, and has unique in-built equipment, such as high-resolution ecosounders.

«Protection of the marine ecosystems is included in the Environmental Chapter of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, according to which our country should provide regular environmental monitoring of the Sea according to the EU standards. At present, Ukraine is implementing the requirements of the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive aimed at the achievement of the good environmental status of the sea. We are very thankful to the Belgian party for such assistance, which reinforces environmental monitoring of the Black and Azov Seas”, – mentioned the Minister of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources of Ukraine Roman Abramovskyi.

Besides this, Ukraine will implement independent from fishery scientific monitoring of the fish stocks, fundamental scientific research in the open sea, geological surveys of the marine bottom, etc.

The Memorandum envisages the reinforcement of the cooperation of Ukrainian and Belgium scientists regarding the joint Black Sea surveys, especially the raise of the hydrogen sulfide layer. At the same time, the Belgian party invites Ukrainian specialists to join their surveys in the Northern Sea.

It is expected, that very soon with the financial support of the EU project “EU for Improving Environmental Monitoring in the Black Sea (EU4EMBLAS)” the research vessel “Belgica” under the Ukrainian flag will travel to Ukraine. In autumn, a start of complex monitoring of the marine environment using this vessel is expected to start.

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