Pyongyang, DPR Korea — Prof. Raphael P.M. Lotilla, PEMSEA Executive Director, visited Pyongyang, DPR Korea, upon the invitation of the Director General of the General Bureau for Cooperation with International Organizations (GBCIO) of the Ministry of Foreign Trade on 15-19 June 2010. The purpose of the visit was to review DPR Korea's progress and achievements with regards to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Strategy for the Seas of East Asia (SDS-SEA).
During the meeting, His Excellency Choe Yon, Vice Minister of the Ministry of Foreign Trade, expressed the intention of the Government of DPR Korea, as an official participating nation in PEMSEA, to make active efforts for SDS-SEA implementation for the prevention of global climate change and protection of the regional sea environment.The Vice Minister expressed his sincere wish for continuous cooperation between GBCIO and PEMSEA in implementing the SDS-SEA through ICM scaling up, while hoping that PEMSEA will contribute to developing new cooperation projects in the country.Prof. Lotilla expressed his deepest thanks to HE Choe Yon for graciously meeting him in Pyongyang despite his busy schedule and for hosting a welcome dinner. Prof. Lotilla mentioned that the Ministry's commitment to the implementation of the SDS-SEA is very much appreciated by all PEMSEA Partners and sponsoring organizations. He added that PEMSEA looks forward to continue working closely with the Ministry of Foreign Trade in identifying funding opportunities with the Global Environment Facility and other donors and Partners to advance the implementation of the SDS-SEA and integrated coastal management (ICM) in DPR Korea. He also confirmed that having a DPR Korean intern, Mr. Choe Rim, present in the PEMSEA Resource Facility for the past three months was a big help in pursuing different options for moving forward.Prof. Lotilla held meetings with GBCIO, led by Director-General Mr. O Kyong Chol and Deputy Director-General Mr. Jon Kyong Su, and with representatives of other agencies as well. The PEMSEA Executive Director and the GBCIO Director General discussed and agreed on the draft project document "Building Capacity for Pollution Reduction through ICM Scaling up in Taedong River Basin, DPR Korea." The meeting also reviewed and agreed upon the Terms of Reference for a Programme Assistant from DPR Korea to be assigned to the PEMSEA Resource Facility.Prof. Lotilla visited the ICM Training Center of the Faculty of the Earth Environment Science and e-library in Kim Il Sung University. The Dean of Faculty and the Chief of the ICM Training Center briefed Prof. Lotilla on the background and history of the Center, and the nationwide ICM Training status and plans in Kim Il Sung University. A discussion followed regarding the future development of the ICM Training Center.Prof. Lotilla also visited the ICM demonstration site in Nampho City and was met and welcomed by the Chair of the Nampho City People's Committee, who briefed him on the implementation of ICM project and the plans for ICM scaling up. Prof. Lotilla visited the ICM Research Center and discussed with officials the future plans of ICM scaling up in Nampho City.The Executive Director also met with Mr. Jerome Sauvage, the Resident Representative of the UNDP Office in Pyongyang, with whom Prof. Lotilla discussed the opportunities for collaboration between PEMSEA and UNDP Pyongyang Country Office in carrying out developmental work in DPR Korea.Prof. Lotilla updated the officials he met during his visit to Pyongyang on the preparations for the East Asian Seas Partnership Council Meeting this July in China. The meetings and site-visits during the DPR Korea visit confirmed and strengthened the cooperation between PEMSEA and DPR Korea to implement the SDS-SEA and ICM in the country.Cooperation with DPR Korea: PEMSEA Executive Director Visits Pyongyang, DPR Korea