. .

Evaluation of the implementation of the Action Plan

At their 13th Ordinary Meeting, the Contracting Parties recommended that the implementation of the Action Plan should be evaluated and a report on the subject drawn up to be submitted to the 7th Meeting of National Focal Points for SPAs, in 2005 in Seville (Spain).

The evaluation helped to examine how much progress was made with regard to the implementation as it was outlined in the Action Plan’s implementation schedule, and propose, if necessary, recommendations to readjust the schedule or to adopt a new schedule starting from 2007.

The main documents used to draft this evaluation report were RAC/SPA’s activities reports and the national reports produced by the Contracting Parties, enriched by the opinions and comments of the National Focal Points for SPAs on one hand and the Action Plan Associates and Partners, on the other. These were approached through a simple questionnaire to poll their opinions and assess their degree of participation.

The conclusions of this evaluation were :

With a few exceptions, the activities completed or started at regional level usually comply with the Action Plan – RAC/SPA carried out all the required tasks in accordance with the Action Plan timetable, according to the objectives and priorities that were decided on.

However, and despite considerable efforts made by a certain number of countries, delays and shortcomings were noticed at national level due to various constraints:

  • elaboration of an integrated planning strategy in national programmes ;
  • insufficient political backing ;
  • lack of public interest ;
  • conflicts of interest between certain departments or sectors ;
  • lack of coordination between the various institutions involved ;
  • lack of bodies and staff working constantly on the subjects ;
  • lack of specialists in the field and insufficient training on pertinent subjects ;
  • absence of funding or restrained budgetary reserves leading to certain actions;
  • not being carried out or being partially completed.

Resulting from the evaluation an updated Activity Programme for the implementation of the Action Plan on the conservation of marine vegetation in the Mediterranean Sea was adopted by the 14th Meetings of the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention in Barcelona (Spain) in November 2005.