Busan, South Korea

Busan City has won the bid to host the 7th International Marine Waste Conference, an international conference hosted by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) dealing with the global issue of international marine waste policy.

Busan, located on the southeastern end of the Korean peninsula, is Korea’s second-largest city famous for its picturesque mountains and beaches. Equipped with world-class MICE facilities including BEXCO convention center and Nurimaru APEC House, Busan has successfully hosted various business events in the past, from high-level meetings to large scale incentives. As Korea’s second-largest port city, Busan serves as a popular destination especially for marine tourism and offshore plants related events, including the International Fisheries Convention hosted in 2016.

To attract the 7th International Marine Waste Conference, set to be held in Korea this year, Busan Metropolitan City submitted a proposal to the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries in February of this year. The Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries held an evaluation committee composed of industry experts on May 28, and among the three local governments (Gangneung-si, Gangwondo; Boryeong-si, Chungcheongnam-do; and Gyeongju-si, Gyeongsangbuk-do) that submitted proposals for an invitation, Busan was selected as the final host location.

The International Marine Waste Conference is an international event gathering marine waste researchers, policy officials and NGOs from all over the world to share the results of marine waste research and advanced policies and seek new countermeasures. It is said that Busan received a positive response from the committee for its wealth of knowledge and expertise as an international conference destination, its numerous MICE infrastructure, marine sector public institutions, and for leading the promotion of marine environmental policy.


An official from Busan City stated, “Because the marine waste problem is a global one, the hosting of the International Marine Waste Conference Busan will be an opportunity for Busan, South Korea, to increase its international status in contributing to the solution for marine waste.”

This is the first time that The Marine Waste Conference, held irregularly under the auspices of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), is being held in a country other than the United States. Over 700 marine waste international experts from 50 countries and regions will gather in BEXCO, Busan for the event, tentatively scheduled for September 2022. Over a period of 5 days, industry experts will discuss the current situation, problems, and effective countermeasures for marine waste worldwide. Presentations will cover ten topics including prevention of microplastics, collaboration in the private sector, and effective implementation of laws-regulations-policies, and over 170 poster presentations are set to take place over the event period.