Strategic Importance of Blue Economy to Sri Lanka and Challenges
At the COP+21 conference, the idea of blue energy and blue economy first emerged as a component of green economy. At a time when the world is moving away from the Millennium goals towards a Sustainable Development, the emergence of sustainable blue economy seems vital. Blue economy is the sustainable use of marine resources for economic purposes. It generates an economy through the usage of marine and oceanic resources. National policies have also shifted for a greener aspect with an intention to promote a sustainable balance between economic growth and ocean health. Sri Lanka, an island strategically positioned in the Indian Ocean amidst major commercial trade routes encompasses a sea area which is seven times larger than its land area. Having the geographical and territorial advantage, its potential in Blue economy is immense given accurate implication and strategic planning. Rising from the ashes of a thirty-year civil war, the country struggles to strengthen its economy while fostering the rehabilitation and reconciliation processes. The true potential of the nation is hindered by various state and extra territorial non-state actors. This paper intends to address potential of blue economy in the changing global challenges, strategic advantages and national prospects.