To further strengthen their commitment to protect and sustain the world’s epicenter of marine biodiversity, member countries of the Coral Triangle Initiative on Coral Reefs, Fisheries and Food Security (CTI-CFF) have committed to launch its Permanent Secretariat and install an Executive Director by mid-2014.
The commitment was made by more than 70 CTI –CFF government representatives at the 9th CTI-CF Senior Officials Meeting (SOM9) held in Manila from November 26-27, 2013. CTI-CFF officials agreed to the establishment of an Appointments Committee by February 2014 and the engagement of an independent recruitment expert to serve as Facilitator for the hiring of the Executive Director.
The Permanent Secretariat will be hosted by Indonesia and will serve as the main coordinating body in implementing the initiative’s Regional Plan of Action. The CTI-CFF members, which includes Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Solomon Islands and Timor-Leste, have also committed that at least four countries will have ratified the Agreement on the Establishment of CTI-CFF Regional Secretariat by early 2014 so that it can enter into force.
The two-day SOM9 followed meetings and incorporated outcomes of the Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries Management Technical Working Grou ; the Financial Resources Working Group ; and the Coordination Mechanisms Working Group on November 25, 2013. A CTI-CFF Partner Meeting was also conducted on November 28, 2013.
CTI-CFF officials also took steps to expand CTI membership, partnership and collaborative arrangements. In particular, the Meeting considered Brunei-Darussalam’s expression of interest to join the CTI-CFF, the Coral Triangle Center’s application to be recognized as an official CTI Partner, and proposed cooperation arrangements between the CTI-CFF and other international organizations, specifically the South East Asia Fisheries Development Center (SEAFDEC) and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).