» Strengthening cooperation for a healthy ocean in Indonesia
22.03.2018 - Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission

Strengthening cooperation for a healthy ocean in Indonesia

© UNESCO - Vladimir Ryabinin, IOC Executive Secretary (center), during his visit to the UNESCO Office in Jakarta.

On 18-19 March 2018, Vladimir Ryabinin, Executive Secretary of UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC), travelled to Jakarta, Indonesia to take part in the International Indian Ocean Science Conference 2018 (IIOSC) and the 2nd International Indian Ocean Expedition-2 (IIOE-2) Steering Committee Meeting.

The visit aimed at strengthening cooperation and coordination between UNESCO’s IOC and the Government of Indonesia in the fields of coastal and marine hazards and ocean health, as well as encouraging Indonesia to take a regional leadership role in the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030).

Mr Ryabinin opened the International Indian Ocean Science Conference 2018, co-sponsored and co-managed by the IOC-UNESCO Perth Programme Office, with a keynote speech on the Decade of Ocean Science. The Decade will gather ocean stakeholders worldwide behind a common framework to ensure ocean science can fully support countries achieving the 2030 Agenda, in particular its Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14.

Mr Ryabinin, accompanied by Prof. Shahbaz Khan, Director and representative of the UNESCO Office in Jakarta, met with Mr. Zulficar Mochtar, Head of the Research and Human Development of the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, to discuss the potential support of the IOC for the Our Ocean Conference to be hosted by the Ministry in Bali, Indonesia in October 2018. The group later met with Mr. Luhut Panjaitan, the Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs of Indonesia. Considering Indonesia is the largest archipelagic state, achieving SDG 14 was at the heart of the discussion. The meeting agreed on a number of actions to be followed up in the near future to strengthen coordination in preparation for the UN Decade for Ocean Science.

While in Jakarta, Mr Ryabinin also visited several ocean-related institutions. Among the key stops was the National Oceanographic Data Center (NODC) at the Geostech Laboratory of the Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT). NDOC is a pilot project initiated by the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs to integrate data and ocean information for decision-makers. Mr Ryabinin encouraged Indonesia to scale up the pilot. A formally established NODC could take the lead for coordination and data sharing in the region, especially in relation to ocean health and coastal and marine hazards.

Mr Ryabinin also visited the Research Center for Oceanography at the Indonesian Institute of Sciences, and its Regional Training and Research Center on Marine Biodiversity and Ecosystem Health, established in October 2016 under the auspices of the IOC.

A month after international experts gathered at the Symposium on Advances in Tsunami Warning to Enhance Community Responses at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France (12-14 February 2018), Mr Ryabinin spent some time at the Indian Ocean Tsunami Information Center (IOTIC), hosted and supported by the Indonesian Agency for Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics (BMKG). The IOTIC-BMKG Programme Office is responsible for supporting Indian Ocean Member States in capacity building, awareness and preparedness.

The Executive Secretary’s visit to Jakarta concluded with a meeting at the Indonesian Tsunami Early Warning Centre of BMKG, one of the Tsunami Service Providers of the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (IOTWMS).

For more information, please contact:

Ardito Kodijat (a.kodijat(at)unesco.org)

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