This month we welcome the Maldives to the IOSEA
family, which brings a full complement of members
from South Asia. The IOSEA MoU took effect in the
country on 1 July 2010, and a Focal Point has already
been appointed. Please visit the Membership section
of the website for contact details of the Director,
Fisheries Management Agency.
The Secretariat is pleased to announce that its
application to the United States Marine Turtle
Conservation Fund – for partial funding
of the Sixth Meeting of IOSEA Signatory States
– has been approved. This generous contribution
from the US Government will go a long way towards
bringing together all of the member States in
order to review implementation of the agreement.
Meanwhile, discussions are continuing with countries
that are considering hosting the meeting in the
early part of 2011.
Speaking of the US Marine Turtle Conservation
Fund, we have just updated a table describing
the many turtle conservation projects around the
IOSEA region that have been supported through
the fund over the last five years. From 2005-2009,
projects in about 37 countries have received MTCF
support to the tune of USD 3.7 million.
Elsewhere on the website, we report on two
bycatch workshops held in June, one in Bali
and the other in Brisbane. The IOSEA Coordinator
took advantage of his trip to Australia to pay
a visit to the Department of the Environment,
Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) in Canberra.
The provisional ‘Terms of Reference and
Guidelines for IOSEA National Focal Points’
served as an excellent starting point for a half-day
discussion with the IOSEA Focal Point, Jillian
Grayson, and other colleagues of the Marine Division.
Australia’s voluntary contribution to IOSEA
arrived in June – a much needed injection
of funding in what is certain to be a challenging
At long last, the almost never-ending story of
our website troubles seems to be nearing a happy
conclusion. After giving up on two US-based internet
service providers that were unable to provide
the required functionality, we have been working
with an ISP in Thailand to restore the Online
Reporting Facility to full operation in the coming
days. Moving the database from the United States
to Thailand may impact the speed of access –
positively or negatively – depending on
one’s location on the globe, but hopefully
any delay in response time will be negligible.
A formal announcement will be made to Signatory
States once the system is ready to accept new
One a personal note, we were pleased to hear
recently from Jairos Mahenge, who has taken a
two-year leave of absence from his work at the
Mnazi Bay - Ruvuma Estuary Marine Park, Tanzania,
to attend a course on ‘Coastal Adaptation
to Climate Change’ at the University of
Rhode Island/Coastal Resources Center, in the
US. We wish Jairos all the best in his studies.
This month marks a minor
anniversary for IOSEA: July 14th is the tenth
anniversary of the adoption of the official text
of the IOSEA Marine Turtle MoU -- formalised by
signature of the Final Act of the Negotiation
Meeting held in Kuantan, Malaysia. It is heartening
to note that, of the 20 countries that signed
the symbolic Final Act on that occasion, all but
two (Egypt and Malaysia) have gone on to formally
endorse the agreement, along with 13 other adherents.
We are not aware of any celebrations being planned
this year, but Signatory States may wish to consider
marking one or two significant milestones in 2011:
the tenth anniversary of the adoption of the Conservation
and Management Plan in Manila (23 June) and 1
September: the tenth anniversary of the date upon
which the IOSEA Marine Turtle MoU took effect.
Last, but not least: lots of interesting 'Headlines'
in June ... Enjoy reading them (below)!