STAFF REPORT ISB: Senior government officials from 12 Asian countries have recently concluded a meeting in Bangkok to explore the establishment of a new transboundary Asian partnership on protected areas. The Asia Protected Areas Partnership will be co-chaired by the government of Japan as the first country co-chair and IUCN, International Union for Conservation of Nature.

Protected areas are a vital link to meeting the challenges of development in one of the worlds most dynamic regions. In addition to helping reduce the risk of natural disasters, they provide clean water and enhance food security, provide clean air and medicines, store carbon to help mitigate climate change, and provide homes, jobs and livelihoods to millions of people in Asia and worldwide.

“The establishment of this group represents a new commitment from governments across Asia to work together on protected area issues,” said co-chairs of the initiative Aban Marker Kabraji, Regional Director, IUCN Asia, and Dr. Yoshitaka Kumagai, Regional Vice Chair, East Asia for IUCNs World Commission on Protected Areas.

“I am sure it will make a significant contribution to the effective management of protected areas and to improved understanding, region-wide, of their important contribution to the health of our societies and economies,” said IUCN Councillor Ambassador Masahiko Horie from Japan.

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