The establishment of a regional secretariat for the Coral Triangle Initiative (CTI) is essential to channel funds to support the program and ensure effective coordination between the six governments involved.
The CTI’s partners, including the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the United States and Australia, said in a consultative summit with the six coral triangle countries Friday there was a need to quickly set up a regional CTI secretariat.
“[The secretariat] is going to anchor the efforts of coordination, the US also made that very clear,” said summit co-chairman Lawrence Greenwood Jr. in the conclusion to the second CTI Partners Summit.
Greenwood added a strong coordination mechanism among development partners was essential to make sure distances were effectively addressed to the lowest possible transaction costs and to support the development priorities of the coral triangle countries, also known as
The coral triangle is bounded by Malaysia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Timor Leste and Indonesia.
Australian Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts Peter Garret said all partners had agreed at a meeting with CTI ministers in Port Moresby in March to put in place a simple framework in engaging with the CTI.
“A liaison function with a strong and representative regional secretariat will assist in the sharing of information between partners and facilitate the ability to respond quickly to new and emerging implementation needs,” he said.
“This will also ensure we are not duplicating administrative efforts, but helping to strengthen and complement the CTI coordination mechanism.”
To assist liaisons between partners, Garret went on, the development partners offered support for a regional coordinating function for the CTI.
Earlier in the day, Garret announced Australia would make an immediate contribution of A$2 million (US$1.5 million) to support the initiative.
Development partners have agreed to allocate a total of US$107 million.
Summit chairman and Indonesian Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Minister Freddy Numberi said
some $500,000 would be specifically allocated to support the regional secretariat.
“Australia’s support of the CTI will evolve and respond as the initiative grows… This investment is Australia’s down payment in support of the CTI and recognizes that we are with you in the long haul,” Garret said.
Apart from the establishment of a regional secretariat, the CTI Partners Summit also calls for more inclusiveness in making sure the initiative will welcome a wider variety of development partners
”A platform for cooperation for inviting a wide variety of development partners, the public, multinationals and non profit organizations — that will be the task that we have in the coming weeks and months,” co-chairman Greenwood said.
With the conclusion of the CTI Summit on Friday, partners and countries agreed to meet again later this year to finalize the financial mechanisms, implementation measures and cooperation structures to achieve the goals stated in the CTI Regional Plan of Action, launched earlier in the day by the six heads of state.