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Cablegate: First Senior Officials Meeting of Coral Triangle

VZCZCXRO7529
RR RUEHCHI RUEHCN RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHJA #3355/01 3440849
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 100849Z DEC 07
FM AMEMBASSY JAKARTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7330
INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 1285
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 4568
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 1729
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 4337
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 JAKARTA 003355

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR EAP/MTS, EAP/RSP AND EB/IFD/ODF
TREASURY FOR TFCA BERG
DEPT FOR OES/IET AND OES/ETC
NSC FOR CEQ CONNAUGHTON, VAN DYKE

E.O. 12598: N/A
TAGS: SENV EAID KGHG ECON PREL ID

SUBJECT: FIRST SENIOR OFFICIALS MEETING OF CORAL TRIANGLE
INITIATIVE

1. (U) Summary: Indonesia hosted the Coral Triangle Initiative
meetings on the margins of the Conference of the Parties 13 to the
UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Bali. During a closed
session of Senior Officials Meeting on December 6, the six CTI
countries (Indonesia, East Timor, the Philippines, Malaysia, Papua
New Guinea and the Solomon Islands reached agreement on their
general and specific objectives. On December 7, the CTI countries
agreed to a draft chairman's summary and shared outcomes with
delegations from the United States, Australia, the Global
Environment Facility (GEF) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and
NGOs, including the World Wildlife Fund, the Nature Conservancy and
Conservation International. The U.S. delegation stressed its
commitment to this initiative and announced our intention to commit
$4.35 million in new funds to the CTI. Australians pledged technical
expertise and hinted at future additional development assistance.
GEF CEO Monique Barbut said the GEF is ready to embrace the CTI,
describing intentions to earmark $9.0 million and to help leverage
other contributions to create additional resources. ADB committed $2
million for start-up costs over the next twelve months. The NGOs
pledged $500,000 for immediate stakeholder consultation in the six
countries. Over 100 NGO representatives and other officials
attended a separate CTI stakeholder event on December 7. End
Summary.

CTI Country Delegations Well Prepared
-------------------------------------

2. On December 6, Indonesia hosted a closed session senior officials
meeting of the six CTI countries. This was the first time the
countries had met to discuss the CTI. Dr. Charles Vernon, former
Chief Scientist of the Australian Institute of Marine Sciences and
Jose Ma Lorenzo Tan from World Wildlife Fund Philippines provided
expert counsel to the delegations. Observers included
representatives from World Wildlife Fund, the Nature Conservancy,
Conservation International, and the Government of Pulau.

3. According to NGO observers, all CTI countries delegations came
well prepared for the meeting and provided excellent country
presentations. NGOs characterized the discussions as productive and
constructive. Although senior officials from the delegations had
different expectations for the meetings and different authority
levels for making commitments, delegations quickly reached consensus
They met their objectives, including establishing a common
understanding for CTI, creating guiding principles, actions, and
committing to establishing a CTI plan for action. Participants
agreed to form a technical working group and discussed the
possibility of holding a follow-on Senior Officials Meeting (SOM) in
the Philippines in May 2008. They also agreed that Indonesia would
continue to provisionally host the CTI Secretariat and that the
World Oceans Conference in May 2009 might be a potential venue for
hosting a CTI Summit. On December 7, Chairman Professor Dr. Syamsul
Maarif (Director General for Marine, Coastal and Small Island
Affairs from the Indonesian Ministry of Marine Affairs) reconvened
the meeting. CTI delegations agreed to adopt the draft Chairman's
Summary as the summary of the First Senior Officials Meeting.

Other Delegations Pledge Funding, Expertise
-------------------------------------------
4. Chairman Maarif opened the December 7 CTI Consultation meeting
with a short film on CTI. The Philippine Delegation provided an
overview and shared outcomes from the December 6 meeting with all
parties. The Chairman then invited the United States, Australia,
the GEF, the ADB and NGOs to make presentations.

5. The US Delegation stressed President Bush's commitment to the CTI
initiative and announced the USG intention to provide $4.35 million
in funding to support the efforts of CTI partners. The funds would
be in addition to the ongoing efforts of U.S. agencies like NOAA and
USAID. The delegation also outlined USG involvement in oceans and
coastal management, including recent activities and initiatives like
the creation of the National Marine Monument in the Northwestern
Hawaiian Islands, the Marine Debris Initiative and efforts to
strengthen fisheries management. The US Delegation included Gerhard
Kuska, Council on Environmental Quality; Dan Reifsnyder, Department
of State; and Alfred Nakatsuma, USAID.


JAKARTA 00003355 002 OF 002


6. The Australian delegation emphasized technical expertise and
lessons learned from managing the Great Barrier Reef national park
since its establishment in 1975. The delegation stressed the
contributions that Marine Protected Areas can make toward both
biodiversity and community development Although not specifying
funding toward the CTI, the Australian delegation noted that the new
Australian administration planned to increase development assistance
to 0.5 percent of GNP, with much of this to be devoted to
environmental and climate change issues. Australia hinted that the
CTI and CTI countries are likely to benefit from this increased
assistance.

7. GEF, ADB and NGOs also presented at the meeting. GEF expressed
commitment to the CTI and noted that GEF would like to play a
central role in facilitating funding for this effort. GEF is able
to leverage financial contributions at a ratio of 1:4. New Zealand,
China and France have already expressed interest in CTI. GEF
indicated that the Asian Development Bank would likely be the lead
GEF agency. ADB pledged $2 million for start-up over the next twelve
months. The NGO delegation pledged $500,000 for immediate
stakeholder consultation for the six countries and commitment to
draw on networks and private philanthropy for additional
contributions.

8. The meeting closed with the Chairman noting that President
Yudhoyono would host a December 10 meeting with Delegation heads
followed by a press conference. The chairman summarized that CTI
countries are looking for assistance with financial support to
develop and implement an action plan, technical and scientific
expertise, technical inputs to the action plan, financial support at
the ground level once plans are developed and the establishment of a
trust fund.

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