Strategic Action Programme for the Arafura and Timor SeasTools
The Strategic Action Programme (SAP) for the Arafura and Timor Seas (ATS) will take an ecosystem-based approach to preserve vital ecosystem functions and services that are important for human well-being.
The warm tropical Arafura and Timor Seas are crucial globally, linking the Indian and Pacific Oceans and playing an important role in global ocean circulation.
The ATS region is extremely rich in living and non-living marine resources, including major fisheries and oil and gas reserves. Significantly, the ATS region exhibits high productivity that sustains both small and large scale fisheries, including several high-value, shared transboundary fish stocks. These fisheries provide livelihoods for millions of people in the region and make a significant contribution to food security for both regional coastal communities and populations and also, large populations in export market countries to the north, such as China.
The SAP was approved and endorsed by the Project Board on March 2013. It describes policy and institutional initiatives, and capacity development and investments needed to address the priority problems of a transboundary nature identified in the Transboundary Diagnostic Analysis (TDA) for the ATS region.
The SAP responds to the findings of the TDA for the ATS. The 10-year vision for the ATS and the long-term objective of the SAP is to ‘promote sustainable development of the Arafura-Timor Seas region to improve the quality of life of its inhabitants through restoration, conservation, and sustainable management of marine-coastal ecosystems.’