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  • ISB II Partners’ Night Welcome Remarks

    Institutional Strengthening of the Biodiversity Sector in the ASEAN (ISB II) Closing Forum and Partners’ Night back-to-back with the ABBI Workshop

    From Vision to Action: Celebrating 14 years of cooperation for ASEAN Biodiversity


    20 March 2024 | Alabang, Philippines

    Dr. Theresa Mundita S. Lim

    Executive Director, ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity

    Eminent guest,

    H.E. Andreas Michael Pfaffernoschke

    Ambassador, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany Philippines

    Members from the diplomatic missions of ASEAN Member Countries in the Philippines, representatives from the ASEAN Member States, our dialogue and development partners, ACB colleagues, guests and friends, a pleasant evening to all of you!

    I am pleased to see all of you celebrate with us the longstanding cooperation between the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity and the Federal Government of Germany through the GIZ. This is not only a night to recognize the achievements of the ISB II Project but also to acknowledge the hard work, dedication, and persistence poured out by the project team and our partners. Fourteen years of sustained project collaboration calls for a reflection on how far we have gone on our partnership and what other possible areas of collaboration can we expect in the near future.

    On Day 1, we had a very productive planning workshop to operationalise the ASEAN Business and Biodiversity Initiative (ABBI), a collaboration between the ACB and the ASEAN Business Advisory Council to mainstream biodiversity and nature-based solutions in the strategic priorities of the business sector in the region. The exercise convened stakeholders, including more representatives from the business sector and supported by the ISB II Project. Earlier today, we concluded the ISB II Closing Forum with a discussion of project highlights, best practices, lessons learned, and gaps in the project implementation. 

    One important outcome of ACB’s partnership with Germany is the now more robust and responsive organisational structure of the Centre, through ISB II’s support to the Centre’s Comprehensive Institutional Review. Under our new structure, the ACB’s priority programme areas namely, under biodiversity conservation; knowledge management; capacity development; mainstreaming biodiversity; communication, education, and public awareness; have been our primary approaches in meeting the new global biodiversity targets under the Biodiversity Plan and other multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs). With a more strengthened ACB, you can all be assured that we will sustain the gains of this project, and will continue to scale up regional efforts in expanding and diversifying our partnerships to accomplish our objectives. 

    As the region sees progress in the crafting of the ASEAN Biodiversity Plan, the ACB as facilitator, stays guided by its mandate, vision, and mission, while taking into account the common priorities of the AMS, as well as the objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity, to come up with a regional Biodiversity Plan that is truly for ASEAN, and by ASEAN.  

    The ISB II’s contribution, most especially to our programmes on protected areas, on mainstreaming biodiversity in various sectors, and on public awareness in diverse platforms, were truly valuable in advancing our mandate, as they allowed us opportunities to engage with different sectors, including non-traditional interest groups, to spur biodiversity action. It is for this reason that the ACB, and hopefully, with all of you as our prospective partners, will carry on with our work, imbued with the inspiration derived from the successes of this project, to keep on doing collective action and cross-sectoral collaboration so we can harness our natural wealth sustainably for the benefit and well-being of the  people of ASEAN.   

    I hope that in the coming days, we can count on your support to realise our common vision for a healthier planet and a better future for all. 
    For now, let us all enjoy the night. Mabuhay!

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