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ANNOUNCEMENT/Media Release 6 June 2013 For immediate release The Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programs celebrates 25th

Anniversary at KOPRI headquarters in Seoul, Republic of Korea The Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programmes (COMNAP) will hold its 25th Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Seoul, Republic of Korea, beginning on 8 July 2013. This is a special occasion, being the 25th anniversary of the organisation that was formed in September 1988. COMNAP is an international association of 28 National Antarctic research programmes. The organisation is run from the COMNAP Secretariat, headquartered in Christchurch, New Zealand. Between them the COMNAP members run some 80 Antarctic research stations, 10 intercontinental runway operations and 39 research and resupply vessels. Many of the COMNAP members have operated in the Antarctic since the International Geophysical Year in 195758. As an organisation, COMNAP leads discussions within the Antarctic Treaty system on many issues including co-ordination of search and rescue in the Antarctic, on effective environmental practices and on international co-operation in support of Antarctic science. The 25th anniversary will be celebrated at an official function at the new KOPRI facilities in Incheon and at the meeting venue in Seoul. As part of the celebrations, COMNAP will publish a book A story of Antarctic Co-operation: 25 years of the Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programs in September. The COMNAP Executive Secretary, Michelle Rogan-Finnemore, is delighted to be the head of the COMNAP Secretariat on the occasion of this milestone; she says The people who make up COMNAP have an unrivalled understanding of the Antarctic. They possess the greatest firsthand knowledge of the continent and are witnesses and first responders to the physical changes we are seeing there. Through COMNAP these people can share best practice in Antarctic operations and they have a voice that is critical within the Antarctic Treaty System in order for us to maintain the continent of Antarctica for only peace and science. In Seoul, the COMNAP AGM will discuss a new science program called the Southern Ocean Observing System, will progress work on safetyrelated issues, will have regional discussions on number of issues affecting the Antarctic Peninsula, Eastern Antarctica, the Dronning Maud Land area and the Ross Sea region. Such discussion is critical for the success of the upcoming Antarctic research season which will begin around the continent in October 2013.

Background information: The Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programs (COMNAP) www.comnap.aq Contact: Michelle Rogan-Finnemore, Executive Secretary Michelle.finnemore@comnap.aq +643 364-2273 or +64 21 188-6097 COMNAP brings together the National Antarctic Programs of 28 Antarctic Treaty Consultative State countries (from Africa (1), the Americas (7), Asia (4), Australasia (2) and Europe (14)).

Formed in 1988, the purpose of COMNAP is to develop and promote best practice in managing the support of scientific research in Antarctica. It does this by: Serving as a forum to develop practices that improve effectiveness of activities in an environmentally responsible manner; Facilitating and promoting international partnerships; Providing opportunities and systems for information exchange; and Providing the Antarctic Treaty System with objective and practical, technical and non-political advice drawn from the National Antarctic Programs' pool of expertise. COMNAP is recognised as one of three Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting (ATCM) Observer organisations, alongside the Scientific Committee for Antarctic Research (SCAR) and the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR). This requires the provision of a report to each ATCM, and entitles COMNAP to present advice and recommendations to the ATCM in the form of Working Papers. COMNAPs accumulated expertise and practical solutions to working in a difficult environment are essential to meeting the demanding international and scientific objectives for Antarctica in the 21st century. In August 2014 COMNAP will hold its Annual General Meeting in New Zealand. The Chair of COMNAP is Professor Heinrich Miller of the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Sciences and Helmholtz Emeritus Professor in Polar, Marine and Coastal Science.

The Korea Polar Research Institute (KOPRI) www.kopri.re.kr Contact: Hyoung Chul SHIN, Head, Department of International Co-operation hcshin@kopri.re.kr +82 (0) 32-260-6270
The Republic of Koreas polar research history began in March 1987 when the polar research center was opened at the Korea Ocean Research & Development institute (KORDI) and the Korean National Committee on Antarctic Research (KONCAR) was founded in August that same year. Then, the Korea Polar Research Institute (KOPRI) was created as part of KORDI and it has been the operator of Koreas national polar program since 1987, being a government sponsored research institute dedicated to polar science and logistic support which was established to contribute to the development of national science and technology capacities and to advance knowledge for the benefit of all mankind by undertaking worldclass scientific research programs in cooperation with national and international partners. KOPRI is the lead agency for conducting polar scientific research and operating the research infrastructure, such as King Sejong Station and Jang Bogo Station (currently under construction and will be completed in early 2014). KOPRI is also in charge of the icebreaking research vessel Araon, advises the Korean government on polar affairs and organises public outreach programs.