Member nations of the Coral Triangle Initiative for Coral Reefs Fisheries and Food Security (CTI-CFF) recently issued the Putrajaya CTI Joint-Ministerial Statement 2012 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, following the Fourth CTI-CFF Ministerial Meeting (MM4) held November 22 to 26, 2012.
During the MM4, strategies on sustainable financing and communication, criteria development for admission of new partners and transitional and operational plan for the regional secretariat were discussed. According to Gellwynn Jusuf, Secretary General of the Indonesian Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, the declaration guides the CTI-CFF in achieving its objectives and aspirations.
CTI Partners, including the Australian Government, the US Government through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Asian Development Bank (ADB), Conservation International (CI), The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) attended the meeting. In a sign of the times, the meeting information is available on Facebook, as well as widely reported on in local press.
In Washington DC reported on the Putrajaya Statement as setting a number of concrete goals, including:
● Establishment of a permanent secretariat of the CTI-CFF in Manado, North Sulawesi (Indonesia), and plans for it to be operational by 2013.
● The designation of June 9 as the CTI Day.
● The establishment of common regional funds.
CTI nations are already using the meeting as a jumping-off point for conservation plans. According to a December 1, 2012 article in the Sabah Times, an East Malaysian publication, Dr Ongkili, CTI Council of Ministers’ current chair, Malaysia was ‘keen to promote a Blue Economy or blue carbon approach that uses carbon accounting to quantify ecosystem service value.’
The newspaper quoted him as saying, “The Tun Mustapa Park in Sabah is targeted to be declared a new marine conservation area by 2015. It will serve as a pilot project for our blue carbon approach that integrates environmental conservation and restoration with climate change adaptation and sustainability.” Working with CI’s materials, Malaysia plans to use the US CTI Climate Change Adaptation toolkit to conduct a vulnerability assessment for Tun Mustapha Marine Park as a pilot study in the near future.
Conservation International has been a partner of the CTI since its inception in 2007. Under the CTI, CI carries out activities in four of the six CT countries, as well as a number of activities across the region, increasing the capacity of national, regional and local governments and communities to manage their marine resources, promoting ocean health, improving fisheries management and increasing food security for the 360 million people of the Coral Triangle.