MANILA (MAY 3, 2012): The Coral Triangle Initiative (CTI) has called on the international community, private sectors and development partners to continue supporting its goal to sustainably conserve and manage the world’s richest marine biodiversity environment.
Science, technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Dr Maximus Ongkili , who chairs the CTI Council of Ministers, said technical and financial support from the various parties was crucial and he called on them to be part o fthe CTI Business Community.
“This includes lending their technical and financial support as the Coral Triangle is an asset that belongs to everybody and symbolises initiative for world food security.
“You will also be the beneficiary of efforts to conserve the Coral Triangle marine as the initiatives do not only involve sustainability programmes but also climate change adaptation.
“Hence, the CTI effort is actually for global wellbeing and economy,” he said in his keynote address at the 1st CTI High Level Financial Resources Roundtable held in conjunction with the Asian Development Bank’s 45th AGM here today.
The CTI members comprise Malaysia, Indonesia, Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines and the Solomon Islands. Sabah is the only part of Malaysia covering the CTI scientific boundary.
Dr Ongkili added that the CTI was formed to advance a new concept of development model of Marine Spatial Planning and Blue Economy where benefits are distributed in an equitable manner.
For the CTI priorities for 2012 to 2013, Dr Ongkili said institution building and foundation support programmes which required technical assistance would cost about US$1.7million. The CTI will also focus on capacity building to carry out transboundary seascape planning, which will cost US$3.5million.
Over the next year, the CTI also plans to identify coastfish sites in each of the countries which involves cost of US$800,000 and US$300,000 for the Marine Protected Areas network activities.
Dr Ongkili also said that to implement effective actions for climate change adaption, social and natural impacts in the Coral Triangle needed to be identified. Towards this, the CTI would prepare a CT-wide baseline data repository, including data on endangered species.
Dr Ongkili also held a bilateral meeting with Philippine Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources Ramon Jesus P. Paje where they discussed, among others, progress on the establishment of the CTI regional secretariat.
In delivering the Ministerial Statement by Malaysia, Sabah Agriculture and Agro-Industries Permanent Secretary and Deputy Chair of Malaysia’s CTI Coordination Committee Datuk Ujang Sulani said Malaysia was developing a comprehensive action plan to also fulfil the Global Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) for sustainable marine resources management and poverty eradication.
He added that Malaysia was also targetting the gazettment of the 1.1 millioan hectares Tun Mustapha Park covering land and sea in northern Sabah by 2015. The park spanning the district of Kudat, Kota Marudu and Pitas has more than 50 islands.
Ujang also said the Sabah Fisheries Department had been elected chair of the Ecosystem Approach for Fisheries Management (EAFM) and Malaysia would host the EAFM regional exchange workshop from 25 to 28 May in Kuala Lumpur.