THE coral reef conservation and management program is one of the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries s priorities because it is considered to be in line with the economic growth rate of the coastal area.

According to the Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Edhy Prabowo said this value was not solely from fisheries, but was also obtained from the tourism sector and other sectors related to the coastal economy. Conservation and management of coral reefs results will be directly proportional to the growth of the coastal economy considering that these marine biota have high economic value.

“Referring to the study of the United Nations Environment Program two years ago, the economic value of Indonesia’s coral reefs reached US$37 billion in 2030 if managed properly. The need to strike a balance between economic growth and conservation efforts in managing Indonesia’s marine wealth, including coral reefs,” he said.

He added, realizing the role of coral reefs that are so large in the marine ecosystem, I asked for the planting of massive coral reefs carried out by all layers. Moreover, he continued, coral reefs have other benefits, such as producing oxygen that is needed by humans and other living things.

“It is time for the policy not merely to prohibit the use without any underlying reason or without justification based on scientific studies. Of course, the use must also be balanced with conservation efforts. The key is balance,” said Edhy.

He revealed, KKP is targeting that 10 percent of the total area of ​​Indonesian waters (equivalent to 32.2 million hectares) become a conservation area of ​​water that is sustainably utilized in 2030.

Previously, Director General of Sea Space Management at the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (KKP) Aryo Hanggono said that the area of ​​Indonesia’s marine conservation area has now reached 23.34 million hectares, equivalent to 7.18% of the Republic of Indonesia’s waters.

“Until March 2020, the total area of ​​Indonesian marine conservation has reached 23.34 million hectares or 7.18% of the total area of ​​Indonesian waters. It still needs 2.82% or 9.16 million hectares more to reach the target of expanding the area,” Aryo Hanggono noted .

As is known, the Government of Indonesia is targeting 32.5 million hectares or 10% of the total area of ​​Indonesian waters as a marine conservation area that is operational and sustainably utilized by 2030.

Aryo further explained, even though it had reached 23.34 million hectares to date, the operational and exploited water conservation area had only reached 9.89 million hectares.

“To achieve the main objectives of the management of marine conservation areas there are a number of challenges, including integrated planning between the center, the regions and other stakeholders and sustainable funding,” he concluded. [antaranews]