Skip to content

Indonesia Advocates Blue Economy Framework to ASEAN Member Countries, Progress Ensues

    ASEAN Blue Economy Forum 2023
    ASEAN Blue Economy Forum 2023 (Youtube)

    On July 2-4, 2023, the Indonesian Minister of National Development Planning Suharso Monoarfa discussed the Blue Economy’s framework and propensity for growth to member countries at the ASEAN Blue Economy Forum 2023. Member states found the framework favorable, resulting in the discussion of the next steps for its implementation. During the summit, a total of 645 guests participated in the Geoventure events, while 288 guests attended the main events and the Indonesia Blue Economy Roadmap and ASEAN Ministerial Panel: ASEAN’s View on Blue Economy launch.

    During the 2023 ASEAN Blue Economy Forum, Indonesia (holder of the 2023 ASEAN chairmanship) reiterated its commitment to delivering the ASEAN Blue Economy Framework as one of its economic goals this year. The framework complements ASEAN’s Vision 2045 – the bloc’s strategy for carbon neutrality and other initiatives promoting sustainable practices.

    To further unlock the Blue Economy’s potential, Minister Suharso highlighted Indonesia’s success in initiating the global finance alliance. This alliance mobilizes new sources of financing from non-government sectors, fostering collaborations to develop eco-tourism, ocean and coastal waste management, and sustainable marine manufacturing.

    Understanding Blue Economy

    ‘Blue Economy’ was introduced to Southeast Asia in 2021 as a catalyst for economic growth. The term pertains to the sustainable and inclusive use, governance, and conservation of oceans, seas, and marine resources for economic growth across various sectors. While sectors such as fisheries, aquaculture, mariculture, coastal tourism, marine biotechnology, and ocean energy are not new, the Blue Economy approach highlights the importance of financial, government, and social support for these types of businesses while also ensuring their operations pose minimal risks to the community and the environment.

    Photo by Fadrian Dwiki on Unsplash
    Photo by Fadrian Dwiki on Unsplash

    A commitment to implementing the Blue Economy Framework

    In October of the same year, ASEAN leaders released the ASEAN Leaders’ Declaration on Blue Economy statement. The latter aimed to reinforce the nations’ commitments to promoting and advancing the Blue Economy within their respective countries. Created during the height of COVID-19, the document highlighted the need for collective efforts among countries to mitigate the pandemic’s effects and promote a comprehensive recovery for all. The plan was to explore the potential of ASEAN’s water resources while ensuring it is secured by law from potential mishandling and overconsumption. 

    The document also recognized the challenges posed by changing geopolitical and socio-economic landscapes and non-traditional threats like climate change. Hence, it calls to attention the importance of collaborating and engaging with internal and external stakeholders through peaceful communications. Member countries are to champion the Blue Economy in their respective countries under the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, including Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and the ASEAN Charter.

    Starting the Blue Economy framework implementation in Southeast Asia is crucial. It is considered the world’s largest marine-biodiverse region, where 31% of the world’s mangroves, 33% of seagrass beds, and 33% of coral reefs are found. Moreover, certain nations share a coastline

    The ASEAN Blue Economy Forum and the Blue Economy framework are significant milestones toward ASEAN’s sustainable and inclusive economic growth. Through cooperation, communication, and coordination, ASEAN member states can further harness the water’s potential for every nation’s shared prosperity and environmental conservation.

    Article by: Joane Camille L. Legaspi

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *