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MSC and Indonesian government continue collaboration to strengthen sustainable seafood market

Jakarta, October 25, 2022 - The Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (MMAF), together with the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), have agreed on a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the development of Indonesian marine and fisheries for the second period. The signing of the MoU was carried out by the Secretary General of the MMAF, Antam Novambar and the MSC's Regional Director in Asia Pacific, Patrick Caleo. 

The MSC program in marine and fisheries development in Indonesia aims to support the acceleration of progress in fisheries and marketing of sustainable fishery products in Indonesia through the improvement of the national Fisheries Improvement Program (FIP) and by increasing the accessibility to marketing for sustainable fishery products. This is based on the results of monitoring and evaluation by the Foreign Organization Licensing Team of the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 

The MSC is an international non-profit organization focused on sustainable fisheries and protecting seafood supplies for the future. The MSC cares for the health of the world's oceans by valuing and recognizing sustainable fishing practices. In the previous MoU, the MSC achieved the goals of the collaboration, including conducting a gap analysis and support for 11 priority fisheries commodities in Indonesia through the MSC's Fish for Good program. 8 priority fisheries in Indonesia received commitment recognition through the In Transition to MSC program and 8 fisheries received funding from the MSC's Ocean Stewardship Fund which supports the implementation of the FIP action plan. 

In addition, the program has also supported certification to the MSC Fisheries Standard for more than 12 Indonesian tuna fisheries. 46 Fish Processing Units have achieved MSC Chain of Custody certification together with one food service company which serves a sustainable seafood menu. The program has also increased technical understanding of the MSC's standards amongst national stakeholders from 49% to 75% (amongst more than 300 participants). 24 Indonesian fishery experts have become MSC Fisheries Standard Experts. 

Secretary General of the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, Mr. Antam Novambar said Indonesian fisheries are the second largest producer of wild seafood in the world. Seafood is the main source of protein for local consumption and food security as well as the primary contributor to export products. Therefore, Indonesian fisheries management must also pay attention to the health of stocks and ocean ecosystems, which are central to the world's marine biodiversity. MMAF and the MSC work closely with stakeholders from fishers, government, scientists, and businesses at local and global levels to support a blue economy and Indonesia's 2025 vision. Through this collaboration, MMAF hopes that the agreed programs can be fully realized and targets achieved to provide maximum benefits for all parties, continued the Secretary General of the MMAF. 

Patrick Caleo, the MSC’s Regional Director Asia Pacific, explained that the MSC Standard is a globally recognised benchmark for sustainable fishing. To be certified sustainable, fisheries must meet the three core principles of the MSC Standard: maintaining sustainable fish stocks, minimising environmental impact, and having effective fisheries management in place. “MMAF and MSC agree that improving the way our ocean is fished is critical in order to provide food, income and employment for a growing population. This second MoU shows our continued commitment to collaborate on initiatives to safeguard Indonesia's ocean resources and fish supply for future generations," continued Patrick Caleo. 

In this second period, the MSC, together with the government and stakeholders, will focus on the national fisheries improvement program for priority fisheries such as tuna, mud crab, crab, shrimp, squid, large pelagic fish and small pelagic fish. The MSC will continue the process of facilitating inter-stakeholder understanding of fisheries in Indonesia, starting from fishery commodities, fleets, fishing, supply chains, and prices, as well as domestic and international markets. Various technical guidance activities, business meetings and awareness raising on sustainable fisheries management and sustainable products. To support welfare, the MSC will help facilitate business actors to access the market, strengthen the capacity of marine product business actors such as retail, and food product companies in the country and prepare information to support the promotion of Indonesian sustainable fishery products in domestic and global markets.