chapter  1
Small Island Developing States: Issues and Prospects
Pages 10

Often referred to as the Barbados Programme of Action (BPOA), The United Nations Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) hosted in Bridgetown Barbados in 1994 affirmed the commitment of over 40 SIDS to improving the quality of life of all their residents, building and strengthening institutional capacities and reiterating their sovereign rights over ownership of their resources (www.sidsnet.org). The states also acknowledged their economic, social and environmental constraints and vulnerabilities, and declared that these could be mitigated, and the long-term goal of sustainable livelihoods achieved through joint action and the formation of sustained, equitable and working partnerships with inter-governmental, non-governmental and other agencies. The BPOA, rooted in Chapter 17 of Agenda 21, identified a number of activities that each small state should pursue, including distance education, environmental education, global sea-level monitoring, natural hazards and disaster management, preservation of tangible and intangible cultural heritage, and the application of information and communication technologies (ICTs) to mitigate the problems of isolation. The conference also recognized the need to harness tourism potential but also the need to manage its negative environmental and sociocultural impacts.