North East Indian Ocean and South East Asian Seas Region
The main activities and accomplishments of the North East Indian Ocean and Southeast Asian Seas IMMA group in 2019 are described below:
- A dedicated session conducted to introduce IMMAs to participants of the ASEAN Workshop on the Conservation of Migratory Marine Mammals and on the Endangered Marine Organism – Risk Assessment and Tangible Solution (22-24 Feb 2019). Workshop was attended by representatives of ASEAN member countries.
- Consultations with the Government of India regarding implementation of conservation actions for the Andaman Islands conducted (see report here);
- New MPAs declared in various areas with IMMA designations in Indonesia, specifically
- Part of the Balikpapan, Adang and Apar Bays IMMA in East Kalimantan Indonesia declared a 3200km2 MPA.
- Incorporation of IMMA-related discussions into existing Southeast Asian Marine Mammal (SEAMAM) network whatsapp group;
- Introduced IMMAs to the Philippine Aquatic Red List Committee during the workshop in July 2019;
- The concept of IMMAs has been posted on the social media pages of several conservation organizations based in the region including BALYENA.ORG, a non-profit organization in the Philippines, and the MareCet Research Organization based in Malaysia;
- Some progress has been made to individual MPAs within the IMMAs, particularly in waters of Indonesia and the Philippines (see attached file for details), and other cIMMA sites and AoIs identified in the region. Progresses include development of new MPAs, development of new or enhancement of existing management procedures, and capacity-building activities for local stakeholders, specifically
- In the Babuyan Marine Corridor IMMA in the Phillippines resolution regarding the creation of an Marine Protected Area signed last October 2019. It is due for submission to the municipal council for review and approval in 2020.
- In the Mersing Archipelago IMMA in peninsula Malaysia the proposed Johor Dugong Sanctuary delineation and management plan was submitted to the Malaysian government for consideration to gazette as a nationally-protected marine managed area.
- Within the Iloilo and Guimaras Straits IMMA in the central Phillippines the Bago municipality has declared parts of its waters as a Marine Protected Area with special emphasis on protecting the Irrawaddy dolphins that occur in that area.
- Wihtin the Western Lesser Sunda Islands Sumba Coastal Area IMMA proposals to establish the Gili Sulat and Gili Lawang in East Lombok as MPAs have been submitted to the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (MMAF). Another proposal to establish the Gita Nada West Lombok MPA has been submitted to the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries.
- Concept of IMMAs were introduced to relevant government agencies across the region by the SEAMAM network through face-to-face meetings and discussions, formal letters, and presentations.