United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Malaysia

MALAYSIA
PERMANENT MISSION TO THE IINITED NATIONS
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STATEMENT BY
H.E. MUHAMMAD SHAHRUL IKRAM YAAKOB
PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF MALAYSIA TO THE UNITED NATIONS AT
THE UNITED NATIONS CONFERENCE TO SUPPORT THE IMPLEMENTATION OF
SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOAL 14
9 JUNE 2017
Mr President,
Allow me to congratulate His Excellency Josaia Voreque Bainimarama,
Prime Minister of the Republic of Fiji and Her Excellency Isabella Loving,
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for International Development
Cooperation and Climate of Sweden, on their election as the Presidents of
the Conference. We also congratulate the other Bureau members on their
election.
2. I wish to express my delegation's confidence in the Co-Presidents'
leadership and ability to steer this meeting. I also wish to assure the CoPresidents
of my delegation's fullest cooperation to enable you to fulfil your
responsibilities.
3. I also wish to express my delegation's appreciation to the Permanent
Representatives of Portugal and Singapore, as the Co-Facilitators of the
draft Call for Action Political Declaration, for their hard work in bringing
together the views and perspectives of delegations.
4. At the outset, Malaysia wishes to associate itself with the statement
delivered by Her Excellency the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Human
Mobility of Ecuador on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.
313 East 43rd Street
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Email: mwnewyorkun@kln.gov.my
Website: www.un.int/malaysia
Mr. President,
5. It is without a doubt that the Malaysia is highly dependent on the ocean
and seas. As a trading nation that is dependent on maritime routes and one
of the biggest exporter of containerised cargo (12th biggest with 2.06 millions
of TEUs in 2014), we identify ourselves as a maritime nation. It is therefore
only natural that we place great importance on the conservation and
sustainable use of the ocean, seas and marine resources.
6. As such, Malaysia is supportive of the Call for Action Declaration to be
adopted by this Conference. We view the Call for Action as encapsulating
our national and also the international community's collective commitment to
conserve and sustainably use the ocean, seas and marine resources. It
provides a snapshot and serves as a reminder of our efforts to conserve and
sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources to achieve the
targets of SDG 14.
Mr. President,
7. Goal 14: Life Below Water is in line with the Eleventh Malaysia Plan
(2016-2020). In the Eleventh Malaysia Plan, the coastal ecosystems will be
conserved to act as natural buffers against the impact of climate change. The
Government of Malaysia will strengthen efforts to improve the management
of coastal areas as well as enhancing marine biodiversity through
conservation measures, particularly mangrove forests and related coastal
forest species. It is targeted that by year 2020, 10% of coastal and marine
areas would be gazetted as protected area.
8. To achieve the target, a number of factors would need to be considered
and addressed when discussing ocean governance and general
management of the national waters. These include:
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(i) One: to resolve conflicts between the different uses of the sea; to
promote economic development; and to protect the marine
environment;
(ii) Two: the sectoral manner in which the maritime sector in Malaysia
is managed. The management system is dependent on each tier
of governance where planning and coordination, implementation
and enforcement, and developmental roles, within the confines of
their jurisdiction, are defined by the constitution, laws and
governmental directives; and
(iii) Three: there is an increasing need to identify new opportunities
and industries for wealth generation from the seas such as marine
ecotourism and renewable energy while enhancing existing ones
such as fisheries and aquaculture. Appropriate policy initiatives in
these areas could support the traditional maritime sector such as
ports and shipping towards further strengthening the national
economy.
9. The Economic Planning Unit of Prime Minister's Department, as the
national focal point for the implementation of SDGs, in consultation with the
relevant ministries, agencies and civil society, is in the midst of preparing the
SDG Roadmap for Malaysia. The Roadmap will include the current situation,
gaps and challenges, as well as the way forward to realise all the Goals
under the SDGs. The Roadmap is expected to be published this year.
Mr, President,
10. Allow me to share some of the measures undertaken by Malaysia in
our efforts to achieve SDG 14. The Department of Fisheries of Malaysia has
just completed the national marine fishery resources assessment. With the
new available scientific knowledge and information, Malaysia is gradually
shifting into the species-area specific fisheries management plan.
11. The National Plan of Action on Fishing Capacity is aimed at ensuring
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that levels of fishing efforts commensurate with sustainable use of fishery
resources. The assessment of the fishing capacity is closely related to the
availability of fisheries resources status. A resource survey conducted from
2013-2015 will provide the data on this status. This in turn would facilitate in
determining the optimal fishing capacity, as well as policy directions and
strategies to manage fishing capacity.
12. Malaysia sees IUU fishing as undermining sustainability and
threatening food security. We are ensuring that the gravity of the sanctions
as provided in domestic legislation are adequate and would deprive IUU
actors from accruing benefits from their activities. Malaysia's commitment is
further manifested in the National Plan of Action on IUU. Malaysia has also
greatly improved its domestic coordination in implementing port State
measures, consistent with the FAQ Code of Conduct for Responsible
Fisheries.
Mr. President,
13. Malaysia stands committed with other Member States towards
realising the Targets under SDG 14, to halt and reverse the decline in the
health of our ocean and seas caused by anthropogenic activities. We see
the Ocean Conference as an occasion where we can begin to embark on a
path that would benefit present and future generations.
14. The science is available and we should be guided by it to enable us to
begin the healing and recovery process for our ocean and seas. We should
see Goal 14 not as an end in itself, but rather as means of achieving a
desired and sustainable level of development.
Thank you, Mr. President.
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