By: Kebba AF Touray
The Minister of Petroleum and Energy Fafa Sanyang, on Wednesday March 27th 2019, presented the Framework Agreement for the Establishment of International Solar Alliance (ISA) and Maritime Zone Bill before the National Assembly Members for consideration and adoption. The first to be presented was the International Solar Alliance Bill.
According to Minister Sanyang, ISA was launched by Narendra Modi the Indian Prime Minister and Francois Hollande, the former French President, at the 21st Conference on the Framework Convention on Climate Change held in Paris on 30th November 2015. The ISA he said was conceived as a coalition of solar resource countries, to address their special energy needs, and a platform to collaborate on addressing the identified gaps through a common agreed approach; that following the launch of ISA in Paris, an international steering committee was set up to develop a framework agreement; that the international steering committee of ISA held its meetings in Abudhabi and New York, among other meetings.
“At the fourth ISC meeting in New Delhi, the draft framework agreement on the establishment of ISA was circulated among the prospective member states for signature at the 22nd Conference of parties to the UN Convention on Climate Change held in Morocco, from 7th to the 18th of November 2016. The framework agreement which was developed by ISC, recommended ISA as a treaty based organization,” he said; that Gambia’s’ location between the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn which has high solar radius, can be harnessed for energy supply through solar technology which is viable alternative source of energy compared to heavy fuel that harmful to the environment, and is not sustainable to meet the energy demands of the country.
On the Maritime Zones Bill 2018, Sanyang said Gambia is a coastal state bordered on the West by the Atlantic Ocean; and as such, has the sovereign right to manage and exploit natural resource within the waters, sea beds and subsurface in the ocean.
“The Maritime Zones Bill 2018 provides the base line and outer limits of the various maritime zones, with appropriate coordinates which enables the country to extend its zone from 18 to 24 nautical miles, ensures Gambia’s sovereign rights over water areas, the sea bed, subsurface and air space above the water surface, as provided in the un-clause,” said Sanyang.
The two Bills have were referred to their respective relevant National Assembly Select Committees for consideration and adoption.
Sittings continue today Wednesday 28th March 2019 at 10:00 am.