Partner: Ministry of the Environment, Japan
Duration: 2015 – 2020
The inadequacy in trained human resources and capacities on taxonomy has been stressed as one of the obstacles in the implementation of commitments to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), especially in the ASEAN region. Lack of scientific information on biodiversity in this region is a crucial issue in the assessment and prediction of biodiversity changes, caused mainly by the lack of taxonomic capacity in data collection and analysis. To meet this challenge, the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) and Japan have partnered to strengthen taxonomic capacities in the ASEAN region, through projects funded by the Japan-ASEAN Integration Fund (JAIF).
Objectives and Approach
The JAIF-funded projects aim:
1. To develop and carry-out taxonomic capacity building programmes urgently needed to implement the National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plans (NBSAPs), relevant national laws, and fulfil the ASEAN Member States’ commitments to the and Convention on biological Diversity (CBD), the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES), and other relevant international agreements that will contribute to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity resources in the ASEAN Region through training workshops and internship programmes.
2. To develop a list of recommendations related to Global Taxonomy Initiative that can be adopted by the ASEAN and Japan (through ESABII, East and Southeast Asia Biodiversity Information Initiative).
3. To develop taxonomic training manuals and field guide books to be used as guide to implement the training workshops in the highly prioritized taxonomic fields
The JAIF projects aim to contribute largely in developing capacities for the AMS in the application of taxonomic knowledge for, among others, reducing the rate of biodiversity loss as stipulated in the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community D.8.i and the AICHI targets of the CBD. The project would also enhance the role and capacity of the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity to function as an effective regional centre of excellence in promoting biodiversity conservation and management (ASSC Provision D.8.vii), harmonizing quarantine and inspection sampling procedures, as well as strengthening best practices for implementing sanitary and phytosanitary measures in trading and commerce of ASEAN products to be more competitive globally as envisioned in the Roadmap (ASEAN Economic Community A.7.38.iv).
The projects also aim to contribute to the establishment and enhancement of the ASEAN standards and conformance in the trading and commerce for biodiversity-related commodities and products which critically need taxonomic knowledge and skills in the region.
Since this project is focused on taxonomy, the identification of invasive alien species (IAS) could be improved in the region and its control or management facilitated. Such capability enhancement could promote the effective implementation of management policies and practices to reduce the impact of IAS at the regional and international levels (ASSC Provision D.8.ix).
Involving the 10 ASEAN Member States, China, Japan and Korea in the project would promote regional cooperation in the sustainable management of biodiversity such as sharing research and development experiences, exchange of experts, and training (ASSC Provision D.8.x). Lastly, the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity, in involving the AMS in the projects, would provide additional support to activities in the sustainable management of biodiversity in the region (ASCC D.8.ii of the IAI Work Plan 2).