Sepang, Malaysia — With only one year left before the 2015 target deadline, the members of the PEMSEA Network of Local Governments for Sustainable Coastal Development (PNLG) met during the PNLG Forum 2014 to review progress made, identify gaps, and develop a roadmap to achieve commitments set at the Dongying Declaration on Building a Blue Economy through Integrated Coastal Management.
Overall assessment showed that the PNLG is still on track in meeting its targets. However, further effort is required and the PNLG Forum adopted a work schedule and road map to ensure that critical targets will be met by 2015.
The Dongying Declaration includes six concrete and measurable targets, namely: Mainstream ICM strategies, objectives and targets into the local government development plans for sustainable marine and coastal development; Implement the PEMSEA ICM Code and Recognition System across 50 percent of the PNLG local government membership by 2015; Apply the State of the Coasts reporting system across 100 percent of the PNLG local government membership by 2015; Co-organize an annual regional forum for Local Chief Executives on ICM scaling up, in collaboration with the PEMSEA Resource Facility and the Xiamen World Ocean Week; Co-organize site-specific capacity development programs, in collaboration with responsible national agencies, local government networks and the PEMSEA Resource Facility; and Achieve a 100 percent increase in PNLG membership by 2015.
During its General Assembly, the PNLG Forum also welcomed two new regular members, Sepang, Malaysia and Beihai, China, thereby bringing the total number of PNLG members to 37.
The Technical Sessions of the Forum organized by the PRF provided the PNLG members the opportunity to share case studies or good practices on various aspects of coastal management, including: engaging the private sector in ICM program implementation, enhancing local government capacity in environmental monitoring, improving livelihood and promoting sustainable fishery management in an urban environment, use of marine functional zoning to address multiple sea use conflicts, and strengthening and sustaining local government commitment in ICM through institutional and legislative improvements.
The PRF plans to document more case studies based on the ICM experiences of the local government members. In partnership with the Coastal Management Center, a Non-Country Partner of PEMSEA, and PNLG members, the case studies are targeted to serve as key learning and information materials that will inspire and help more local governments to apply and implement ICM. The case studies also form part of a knowledge management platform to further scale up the implementation of the SDS-SEA.
The PNLG Forum 2014 was held from September 8-11 in Sepang, Selangor State, Malaysia. The field visit was held on 10 September and included a living lifestyle tour of the village folk in Banghuris, Sepang (Banghuris Agro Tour), a visit to the Kuala Selangor Nature Park and the Fireflies Conservation Park. The Forum was graced by the presence of Tan Sri Abdul Khalid bin Ibrahim, Chief Minister of the Selangor State Government, and Mr. Mohd Sayuthi bin Bakar, President of the Sepang Municipal Council. Eighty-three (83) delegates coming from twenty-six (26) PNLG regular members and two associate members participated in the Forum. The Forum was also participated in by ICM experts (Dr. Chua Thia-Eng, Dr. Gil Jacinto, Dr. Chou Loke Ming), 16 observers from China, Japan, Philippines, Malaysia and Timor-Leste. The Selangor State Water Authority (LUAS), the PRF, and the PNLG Secretariat served as the Secretariat to the Meeting. The PNLG Forum 2014 was hosted by Sepang, Selangor State, Malaysia.