Nusa Dua, Bali (ANTARA) - Minister of Environment and Forestry (LHK) Siti Nurbaya Bakar believes that implementing the blue economy can strengthen marine ecosystems, as it has a sustainable foundation.

"Policies in the blue economy need to be pursued with concrete steps, including capacity building, regulations, and technology," the minister stated on the sidelines of the Archipelagic and Island States (AIS) series of blue economy dialogue in Nusa Dua, Badung District, Bali, Monday.

According to Bakar, other steps that should be taken include considering economic growth, employment opportunities, a resilient climate, and integrated ecological and environmental sustainability.

Coastal ecosystems, such as mangroves, support the blue economy.

“Currently, more than 100 million people in the world live within the reach of mangrove forests. Meanwhile, in countries in Asia, including Indonesia, most of the population depends on mangrove resources, and mangroves have a high value of blue carbon as part of a low-carbon national development strategy," she said.

Bakar noted that apart from strengthening marine ecosystems, the blue economy also encourages economic growth, environmental sustainability, and social inclusion.

However, the minister emphasized that the seas are currently experiencing the impact of human activities regarding the need for food, water, energy, transportation, trade, and medicine.

Moreover, illegal fishing, coastal development without regulations, and pollution pose threats to the seas.

Bakar remarked that the impact is on biodiversity, decreasing fish supplies, and climate change.

"There are already many statutory regulations, legal aspects, and policies in environmental management, coastal conservation, maritime resources, biodiversity, and fisheries governance that support marine affairs," she stated.

The blue economy is one of the themes discussed at the 1st High-Level Meeting of the AIS Forum in Nusa Dua, Bali, on October 10-11, 2023.

Apart from the blue economy, it is also related to the maritime future and solidarity of island and archipelagic countries.

The AIS Forum, which includes 51 archipelagic and island states, is a platform for cooperation between island and archipelagic countries that aims to strengthen collaboration to overcome the four global problems of climate change mitigation and adaptation, blue economy, handling plastic waste at sea, and maritime governance.

The AIS Forum high-level meeting is held to strengthen the role of the forum as a center for smart and innovative solutions and as a platform for mutual cooperation in pushing forward the future agenda of global ocean governance, according to a press statement released by the Indonesian Communication and Informatics Ministry (Kominfo).

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Translator: Dewa Ketut Sudiarta Wiguna, Cindy Frishanti Octavi
Editor: Tia Mutiasari
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