Find a non-exhaustive list of WIOSAP progress and accomplishments so far below.

1. Project Implementation Structures
  • National Implementation Committees (NIC): Nairobi Convention states have each established an NIC and agreed on their roles, responsibilities and requirements under their Terms of References. The NICs provide oversight of WIOSAP’s interventions at the national level and have been active since the project’s inception—in 2018 and 2019, the NICs had reviewed over 60 demonstration projects concepts submitted by proponents.

    Regional Task Forces (RTFs): Three RTFs (on Sustainable Management of Critical Habitats; Water Quality, and River Flows) have been established to ensure effective regional collaboration, shared learning and quality control of the products to be delivered through WIOSAP.  Prof. Salomao Bandeira (Mozambique) was selected as the Chair of Critical Habitats and Dr. Ruby Moothien-Pillay (Mauritius) as Deputy-Chair; Dr. Yves Mong was selected as the Chair of Improved Water Quality and Dr. Richard Kimwaga (Tanzania) was selected as Deputy Chair; Prof. Japhet Kashaigili (Tanzania) was selected as Chair of Sustainable Management of River flows and Dr. Sebastiani Keino Ambinintsoa Roby (Madagascar) as Deputy Chair.

    Working Groups: A technical working group on marine litter and microplastics has been established that seeks to provide a forum for sharing and exchange of information; provide policy guidance and advice to the Nairobi Convention and other regional frameworks; and synthesize information and produce peer-reviewed publications and other products. A technical working group (TWG) on Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) held its first meeting in July 2020. This follows a recommendation from the Nairobi Convention Focal Points and other partners at the MSP meeting held in March 2019 in Tanzania for the establishment of an MSP TWG to lead the development of a WIO regional MSP strategy.

2. Projects

Click through the Story Map below for information on WIOSAP demonstration projects.

3. WIO Ecosystem Guidelines and Toolkit
  • Guidelines and Toolkits

    The Guidelines (on mangrove restoration, seagrass restoration, and environmental flow assessments) provide step-by-step guides on how to conduct a restoration project or assessment and outline WIO-specific case studies on how various interventions have worked and lessons learnt. An additional guideline on ecosystem valuation and a toolkit on climate change vulnerability assessments will be available soon.

    Together with the SAPPHIRE project, WIOSAP is also creating a regional ecosystem monitoring framework that will identify potential ecosystem monitoring indicators and monitoring sites and provide options for a potential framework/programme based on an analysis of current practices, frameworks, and national and regional capacity.

4. WIO Outlooks and Assessments
  • Marine Protected Area (MPA) Outlook and Dashboard

    This publication supports countries to establish baselines and include assessment metrics to track their progress in increasing the spatial extents of national MPAs from the current 2.4% to 10% by 2020 (thus achieving Sustainable Development Goal 14.5). Visit our interactive dashboard to see progress made by Nairobi Convention states!

    Critical Habitats Outlook

    This publication, to be launched in 2020, will outline the state of critical habitats like coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrass in the WIO and address their role in climate change adaptation and mitigation.

    Transboundary Conservation Area Assessment (TBCA)

    The project is currently undertaking an economic valuation of a proposed TBCA between Kenya and Tanzania that will outline the benefits and costs of the TBCA’s establishment.

5. Science to policy
    • WIOSAP has supported the Nairobi Convention’s convening of five science to policy forums in the region, in recognition of the need for science-based policy making and adaptive management. Policy recommendations from the fourth meeting contributed to several decisions of the Convention’s ninth Conference of Parties in 2018. The next forum will be held in early 2021. ‘
    • WIOSAP and partners also supported the Africa Regional Consultation for the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development in January 2020 to ensure the inclusion of the Western Indian Ocean region’s needs and priorities.
6. Capacity Building
  • Marine Spatial Planning (MSP): Five workshops have been held on MSP between 2017-2019. The workshops provided a platform to examine MSP practices and tailor the implementation of MSP to their own maritime domains. At the last workshop in Tanzania, governments and partners asked the Nairobi Convention Secretariat to lead in the development of a Regional MSP strategy and establishment of a MSP technical working group.

    Building impactful leadership for good governance: Between 2017 and 2018, the WIOSAP project held three leadership workshops aimed at building the capacity of senior leaders responsible for overseeing policy and managing environmental resources.

    Implementation of the Land Based Sources and Activities (LBSA) Protocol Workshop: A workshop in December 2018 helped sensitize governments and other partners in the region on the Protocol, challenges to preventing LBSA, and tools available to support prevention activities.

    Training on Environmental Flows (Eflows): A training helped participants to share experiences, discuss and appreciate the relevance and mainstreaming of E-Flows in Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) in the region.

    Training on Constructed Wetland Technology (CWT): Together with KMFRI and WIOMSA, WIOSAP hosted a training to give participants the knowledge and skills to perform basic wetland design and assess existing wetland proposals.

7. Partnership for Project Implementation
    • Regional Economic Communities and Commissions in Western Indian Ocean Region: In April 2019, RECs initiated a collaborative mechanism with WIOSAP (and related projects e.g. SAPPHIRE) and the Convention around blue economy, ocean governance, marine spatial planning, policy harmonization, science to policy, green port development, and marine litter. A core group was established by the RECs to crystalize the mechanism for collaboration, communication interactions and to ensure buy in of the partnership by Governments and RECs for implementation of the project.


    • The project convened a meeting of the Consortium of the Coastal and Marine Ecosystems in the Western Indian Ocean (WIO-C) in September 2019 to discuss the opportunities for strengthening support of WIO-C to WIOSAP project and identify complementary interventions for creating synergies for greater impact in WIO region.


    • WIOSAP has signed Memorandums of Understanding with a) the Port Management Association of Eastern and Southern Africa (PMAESA) to further explore green port policies and possibilities in the region and b) with Macquarie University to support assessments, valuations, and strategies undertaken by the project.
8. Promoting the Project
    • WIOSAP has participated in various events and forums highlighting its purpose and different project outcomes. Examples include a special session and mini-symposium during the 11th WIOMSA Symposium on the MPA Outlook and restoration Guidelines, respectively, and presentations at the Birdlife International Regional Meeting, Institute for Research and Development Meeting, and the WIOGEN (West Indian Ocean Governance & Exchange Network) meetings in 2019.