Pew Fellowship Project by Jamal Jompa

Resolving the Dilemma for the Transference of MPA Management Authority from District to Provincial Governments

The Marine Protected Area (MPA) paradigm has been an important approach for managing marine resources in Indonesia. When the Indonesian government formally adopted a system of regional autonomy implemented at the district (kabupaten) level under Act 32/2004, this included a mandate on and authority over marine waters from the coastline to 4 nm offshore. Since then, many MPAs have been established and managed by district governments. In 2014, the Indonesian Parliament enacted Act 23/2014, which removed the authority of district government over waters below the high tide line, which now come under the authority of provincial governments from 0-12 nm offshore.  As a consequence, all MPAs previously managed by district governments had to be transferred to provincial government (including all the associated assets, fisheries administration/permits, existing management plan, etc.).  However, as most provincial governments did not previously manage any MPAs, and in addition they have limited human and financial resources, it is very challenging for them to take over this mandate.

“In the meantime, improving management effectiveness of MPAs in Indonesia is becoming ever more urgent due to emerging problems associated with climate change and ocean acidification.”

(Dahlan et. al.,2015; Yusuf & Jompa, 2012).

In order to overcome this problem, several key issues which need to be resolved urgently, include (i) the slow and complicated process of transferring existing MPA management authority from District to provincial governments, this is mainly due to the previously established governance system where District Governments had more autonomy; (ii) great challenges faced by Provincial governments in managing the former District MPAs, this is mainly due to lack of human resources, policy framework, and financial support; (iii) Community based management, one of the key strengths/strategies for District MPAs, can no longer easily be facilitated through district government under Act 23/2014, while the capacity of the provincial government is relatively weak in directly mobilizing coastal communities. Many other related dilemmas which vary between regions also need to be resolved through innovative and adaptive approaches. Therefore, it is urgent to have a multi-year initiative to assist in resolving these dilemmas to the transference of Marine Protected Area (MPA) management authority from District to Provincial Governments.

2019 Pew Fellow awardee, Prof. Jamaluddin Jompa held a Workshop entitled “Strengthening the Co-Management of Marine Conservation Areas in South Sulawesi” on Friday, 3 May 2019. This workshop attended by the Head of the Regional Development Planning Agency (BAPPEDA) of both South Sulawesi Province and Pangkajene Regency, and Head of the Marine Affairs and Fisheries Agency (DKP) of both South Sulawesi Province and Pangkajene Regency.

Prof Jamaluddin Jompa explained the aims of his Pew Project.

The purpose of this workshop is to assist in identifying problems encountered by relevant parties in the transfer of authority to manage tMPA to the provincial government and identify the expected contributions given from this Pew Project to the provincial and district governments. Provincial and district’s officials were involved in this workshop with the aim of resolving the dilemmas and issues in the process of transfer of authority, particularly regarding budgeting matters. It is due to the fact that the main problems used to be found in the transfer of authority are related to the budgeting issue that is not proportional to the responsibilities delegated.

On the occasion, the Head of the DKP Office of South Sulawesi Province expressed his appreciation for this program. “Because the transfer of authority and all processes included in it is not an easy job. Therefore, with the increasing number of parties contributing in this issue, it will greatly help the work of the Provincial DKP”, said Sulkaf S Latief.

Officials from Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Agency of both South Sulawesi Province and Pangkajene Regency (DKP), and Regional Development Planning Agency (BAPPEDA) of both South Sulawesi Province and Pangkajene Regency attended the workshop.

There are several marine conservation areas that are targeted in this program, and for South Sulawesi Province, the selected tMPA is located in Liukang Tuppabiring. Firdaus Agung from the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries said that the output of this project is certainly positive, especially in finding the right model to accelerate the transfer of this authority. “It is expected that in its third year, the project will be able to carry out its pilot project. If necessary, this project should be raised to the national level by also involving the Ministry of Home Affairs which also has a Coastal Sub-Directorate,” said Firdaus Agung.

The workshop also discussed the main steps that need to be immediately taken to support the implementation of this project. Every stakeholder, ranging from the district and provincial government, Bappeda, Universities and NGOs, are expected to be able to contribute positively in the formulation of appropriate management models in the management of tMPA.

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