"So far, 40 states have confirmed their participation but we hope the number will eventually rise to 70," Fadel said when seeing off task force members of the Surya Bhaskara Operation, a civic mission organized as part of the Sail Wakatobi-Belitong activities, here Thursday.
The international marine event is expected to also help accelerate economic development in Wakatobi and Belitong.
"The development acceleration program in regions does not only involve the marine affairs and fisheries ministry and the health ministry, but also other concerned ministries and institutions," the minister said.
The marine affairs and fishery ministry`s director general of marine and fishery sources supervision concurrently the Sail Wakatobi-Belitong organizing committee secretary, Syahrin Abdurrahman said the Sail 2011 event has six main activities.
The activities are a yacht rally, a civic mission of Bhakti Surya Bhaskara Jaya, national and international seminars on marine and fishery sources management, archipelagic youth marine cross, marine and fishery product exhibitions, and the peak event which will be attended by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.
The Sail Wakatobi-Belitong 2011 will be organized for six weeks, since the second week of July until the fourth week of August.
The Yacht Rally will start in Darwin, Australia, on July 23, and they will pass 21 districts/cities in Indonesia, and finally finish in Singapore.
The Bhakti Surya Baskara Jaya Operation will be carried out in six provinces, namely Riau Islands, Bangka Belitung (Sumatra Island), West Kalimantan, Gorontalo, Southeast Sulawesi, and South Sulawesi.
Coordinating Minister for People`s Welfare Agung Laksono flanked by Marine Affairs and Fisheries Minister Fadel Muhammad officially launched the Sail Wakatobi Belitong (SWB) or Sail Indonesia 2011 here on June 7, 2011.
The launching was expected to help promote the international marine event to the public worldwide.
The SWB 2011 is being held in Wakatobi, Southeast Sulawesi Province, and Belitung in Bangka Belitung (Babel) Province.