The 21st APEC Roundtable Meeting(virtual) on the Involvement of the Business/Private Sector in the Sustainability of the Marine Environment held by Ocean Conservation Administration ended with success on 21 July 2022. The meeting was attended by more than 20 experts from APEC economies including Chile, China, Indonesia, Japan, Peru, Mexico, the Philippines, Thailand, as well as nearly a hundred experts from government, industrial and academic circles in Taiwan.
In support of APEC Roadmap on Small-Scale Fisheries and Aquaculture (SSFA) endorsed this year, this Roundtable Meeting aims to explore the path to sustainable and responsible development of Small-Scale Fisheries and Aquaculture under APEC’s agenda of ocean conservation and sustainable development. Two topics, namely, " A New Era of Industry Development" and "Blue Carbon Economy" will be discussed, with specific focuses on development and barriers of Community-Based Coastal Resource Management (CBCRM), sustainable and responsible aquaculture under green energy transition, policies and measures that are helpful in enhancing blue carbon sequestration in the region, and marine debris management in blue carbon ecosystems. The result of this Roundtable Meeting will be reported to APEC Ocean and Fisheries Working Group (OFWG) in August as a reference for APEC’s future cooperation on ocean conservation and sustainable development of resources.
During the meeting, experts from Taiwan, including Dr. Hsing-Juh Lin, Professor of Department of Life Sciences, National Chung Hsing University, Dr. Ken-Mu Chang, Director General of Environmental Protection Bureau, Chiayi County, and Dr. Che-Chun Chen, Chair of Department of Aquatic Biosciences, National Chiayi University, shared experiences in development potentials of oceanic carbon cycle, public private partnership in managing marine debris derived from oyster farming conducted in Chiayi County, Taiwan, and the promotion of smart aquaculture and the combination of aquaculture and photovoltaics. Besides, officials from National Fisheries and Aquaculture Service of Chile, Department of Fisheries of Thailand, and Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries of Indonesia shared local experiences in enhancing the development of coastal communities and managing freshwater aquaculture. Dr. Nobuyuki Yagi, Professor of the University of Tokyo specialized in small-scale fisheries and ocean conservation stated that, fisheries and aquaculture is facing multiple risks brought by decreasing labor force, imported food and climate change. Mr. Masanori Kobayashi, Senior Research Fellow, Ocean Policy Research Institute (OPRI) of The Sasakawa Peace Foundation added that sustainable ocean economy will rely on the development of human resources, policy support, innovative technologies, public private partnership and capital investment.
Under the global net zero emission agenda, international attention on blue carbon potential has been souring in recent years. Dr. Daniel Friess, Dean of Department of Geography, National University of Singapore explained that currently there are around 25 commercial blue carbon projects around the world. While commercial blue carbon projects are on the rise, a lot of constraints and challenges are still needed to be overcome, for example, to build relevant monitoring, reporting and verification mechanism (MRV) and governance framework, and to promote equity, benefit sharing and inclusive growth of local communities. Dr. Mat Vanderklift, Director of IORA Indian Ocean Blue Carbon Hub stated that APEC economies have 55% of the world’s mangroves but 77% of the world’s mangrove loss. Finance options such as carbon market, funds, bonds and insurance can provide opportunities for the private sector to invest in the protection, improved management and restoration of relevant ecosystems and to promote blue forest economy. Dr. Atsushi Watanabe, Director of Japan Blue Economy Associated also kindly shared Blue Carbon Initiative launched in Yokohama and Fukuoka, as well as blue credit demonstration in Yokohama, Kobe, Tokuyama-Kudamatsu and Kitakyushu.
In the closing remarks, Dr. Julia Hsiang-Wen Huang, Director General, Ocean Conservation Administration, appreciated the sharing of expert speakers which presents a very different and exciting picture of blue economy, with the introduction of various new and innovative technologies, resource management, industrial practices and financing models, and reiterated that Taiwan is willing to continue exploring relevant issues with economies under APEC framework.
Responsible Authority and Spokesperson: Wu Long-Jing, OCA Deputy Director-General
Contact number: 07-3383202 or 0919-613-467
Issue date: July 22, 2022