Indonesia this week convened an international conference to address ocean issues and the challenge of sustainable development faced by archipelagic and island states due to climate change. (Reuters Photo/US Navy handout)

Indonesia Convenes International Conference to Address Ocean and Coastal Issues

BY :DAMES ALEXANDER SINAGA

NOVEMBER 23, 2017

Jakarta. Indonesia this week convened an international conference to address ocean issues and the challenge of sustainable development faced by archipelagic and island states due to climate change.

The two-day conference, named the "Archipelagic and Island States [AIS]," was held in cooperation with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Jakarta on Tuesday (21/11) and Wednesday.

The conference was attended by representatives of Indonesia, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Cuba, Cyprus, Fiji, Guinea Bissau, Jamaica, Japan, Madagascar, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Sri Lanka, Seychelles, Singapore and the United Kingdom.

"All island countries want to unite. Indonesia takes the initiative for this [conference] because we are the largest archipelagic country in the world," said Luhut Pandjaitan, coordinating minister of maritime affairs.

A forum will be established following the conference, Luhut added.

Arief Havas Oegroseno, deputy minister for maritime sovereignty, said AIS will become a development forum to complement existing dialogues at the regional and global levels.

"AIS forum is not a political forum, nor an economic forum. This is a development forum, which will be a platform for cooperation, exchange of knowledge, technical assistance and access to finance," Arief said.

He emphasized that the delegations in the conference requested that both Indonesia and UNDP prepare further details of the concept on the establishment of the forum.

AIS will be supported through a voluntary trust fund or from other existing funding mechanisms, Arief said.

The conference will also look to convene a ministerial level meeting that will be held in October next year in Bali.

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