The Fifth China-Southeast Asian Countries Marine Cooperation Forum and Inauguration of FIO-UM Joint Center of Marine Science and Technology in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Jointly hosted by the State Oceanic Administration of China and the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation of Malaysia (MOSTI), cosponsored by IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC), and organized by both University of Malaya (UM) and FIO, the 5th China-Southeast Asian Countries Cooperation Forum was successfully convened in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on 16-17 December 2017, and attended by more than 100 delegates from marine authorities and research institutes of China, Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, Philippines and Brunei.

Mr. LIN Shanqing, the Deputy Director General of SOA and Mr. Abu Bakar, the Deputy Minister of MOSTI attended the opening ceremony of the forum and delivered speeches respectively. In Lin’s speech, he highlighted the importance of marine sustainable development and regional marine cooperation in the international community nowadays, and showed China’s willingness in marine cooperation with Southeast Asian countries on blue partnership, expert exchange, and capacity building in the fields of blue economy, protection of ecological environment, development and utilization of new energy, and natural hazards prevention and reduction. 

The inauguration of FIO-UM Joint Center of Marine Science and Technology, as a special event of this forum, was launched together by the Deputy Director General LIN Shanqing of SOA and Deputy Minister Mr. Abu Bakar of MOSTI. Hosted by FIO and UM, this Joint Center aims to seek and extend China-Malaysia marine cooperation and any possible cooperation with other neighboring countries, while well managing and coordinating the existing joint research projects. It will also provide both sides with support in financing, equipment, talents exchange, capacity building, and data sharing, serving as a significant platform for China-Malaysia and China-Southeast Asian Countries in marine science and technology cooperation. 
Chaired by Dr. QIAO Fangli from FIO and Dr. Azizan Abu Samah from UM jointly, the two-day’s forum centered on four topics including (1) marine environmental monitoring and service, (2) marine bio-diversity and ecosystem protection, (3) marine biotechnology and blue economy, and (4) the cooperation initiative in the future. Participants of various countries held wide ranging talks on the topics above and reached broad consensus, thus positively promoting the marine cooperation among Southeast Asian countries.