Ministers and high level officials from 25 archipelagic and island states, UN officials and representatives of a number of regional organizations gathered in Manado on 01 November to address four major areas of action; climate change mitigation, the blue economy, marine plastic debris and good maritime governance.
Given that innovative solutions are required to address these critical issues, the AIS Start Up and Business Summit was held alongside the Ministerial Meeting, attracting 1000 Start Ups from Indonesia and other countries.
The Ministerial Meeting was preceded by the AIS Forum Senior Officials Meeting.
Amongst key outcomes of the meetings it was decided to convene the first AIS High Level Meeting in Indonesia in 2020. The Blue Economy Development Index with UNDP collaboration and the AIS Pledge to EcoTourism was also launched.
The AIS Forum was established as a developmental forum on 01 November 2018 in Manado and the AIS Forum Secretariat was established in Jakarta, earlier this year, under the facilitation of the UNDP Indonesia. It was also decided to establish an Advisory Board to the AIS Forum Secretariat which comprise Ambassadors of Member States in Jakarta.
The Secretariat was initiated with a Seed Fund of US$1 million from the Government of Indonesia, which has already resulted in initiatives to broaden the spectrum of activities. On the sidelines of the Ministerial Meeting, an MoU was signed between the AIS Forum Secretariat and the BRI Bank to provide microfinancing for Start Ups.
Sri Lanka was represented at both the Ministerial Meeting and the Senior Officials Meeting by Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to Indonesia and ASEAN Yasoja Gunasekera.