Coral Triangle Initiative on Coral Reefs, Fisheries and Food Security (CTI)

There is broad scientific consensus that the Coral Triangle represents a global epicentre of marine biodiversity.

Spanning just 1.6 per cent of the planet's oceans, within the Coral Triangle region are 76 per cent of all known coral species, 37 per cent of all known coral reef fish species, 53 per cent of the world's coral reefs, the greatest extent of mangrove forests in the world, and spawning and juvenile growth areas for tuna and other globally-significant commercial fish species..1

The countries of the Coral Triangle region recognise that their marine and coastal resources are a cornerstone of their economies and societies, and that these resources are under increasing threat. Increasing pressures include over-fishing, unsustainable fishing practices, land-based sources of marine pollution, coastal habitat conversion and climate change.

About the CTI

Recognising the need to safeguard the region's marine and coastal biological resources, the Coral Triangle Initiative on Coral Reefs, Fisheries and Food Security (CTI) was formed in 2007.

The CTI is a multilateral partnership between the Governments of Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Solomon Islands and Timor Leste (CT6).

There is currently an interim Secretariat for the CTI, which is in the process of transitioning to a permanent Regional Secretariat. The interim Secretariat is based in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Through the CTI, the Coral Triangle countries have agreed to support people-centred biodiversity conservation, sustainable development, poverty reduction and equitable benefit sharing.

Action plans

The CTI Regional Plan of Action sets goals, targets and actions at the regional level, which either require or would benefit from collaborative action amongst the Coral Triangle countries.

The five goals in the Regional Plan of Action are:

  1. Priority seascapes designated and effectively managed.
  2. Ecosystem Approach to Management of Fisheries (EAFM) and other marine resources fully applied.
  3. Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) established and effectively managed.
  4. Climate change adaptation measures achieved.
  5. Threatened species status improving.

At the national level, each Coral Triangle country has developed a National Plan of Action (NPOA), which specifies domestic priorities and actions for the CTI.

For copies of the NPOAs, please email us.

Australian Government's role in the CTI

When the CTI was established, a group of stakeholders - including the Australian Government - were invited to become Partners to the CTI. Partners have been asked to provide funding support, as well as technical and strategic expertise and advice, to assist the pursuit of CTI goals and to facilitate the establishment of the CTI as a fully functioning, effective and representative regional forum.

The other seven Partners are: the Asian Development Bank, Conservation International, the Coral Triangle Center, the Global Environment Facility (GEF), The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the United States Government (USAID), and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).

The Australian Government Support Program for the CTI

The Australian Government has committed to a phased multi-year program of support to the CTI that will evolve and respond as the Initiative grows. The first stage of support focused on building foundations and momentum for the CTI. The current second stage of support is focused on building the capacity of individuals and communities to develop and grow sustainable industries and livelihoods, by drawing on both local and regional natural assets. A third stage of support was announced in November 2014 and is currently being programmed in consultation with the CTI member countries.

Support activities

The details of the Australian Government's support for the CTI are outlined in the following documents:

Areas of focus for the current phase include:

  • Helping to build the CTI into an effective regional forum
  • Helping to achieve transformational changes to the management and use of marine resources
  • Developing sustainable livelihoods
  • Improving knowledge for better planning and decision-making
  • Supporting communities to be effective stewards of their environment and natural resources
  • Building skills and capabilities for better marine and coastal management

Principles for Australian Government CTI support

In planning and providing support, the Australian Government has, and will, apply the following principles:

  • Support will target people-centred biodiversity conservation, sustainable development, poverty reduction and equitable benefit sharing.
  • Support will match the pace of the CT6 and allow sufficient time and opportunity to ensure meaningful engagement. Support will match standards for engagement in fragile states and recognise capacity constraints.
  • Support will recognise the stage of the development of the CTI as a regional forum. Priority will be given to activities that will underpin the long term strength and success of the CTI.
  • Support will respect and encourage the role of national governments, and be based on detailed, country-led planning, national government priorities, and consultation with the national governments.
  • Support will respect and support the role of the CTI Regional Secretariat, Senior Officials meetings, and Council of Ministers in directing and coordinating achievement of CTI goals.
  • Support will build on, leverage and coordinate with other complementary programs and activities of the Australian Government and initiatives in the region, and will capitalise on Australia's areas of expertise and engagement.
  • Support will be aligned with relevant Australian aid program Country Strategies and Partnerships for Development, or regional strategies and commitments (such as the Pacific Plan and Cairns Compact). Overseas Development Assistance-funded activities under this Support Plan will be subject to Australian aid program processes and requirements directed at ensuring effectiveness.
  • Support will be communicated actively and openly in the interests of improved donor

Australian stakeholders

A range of Australian stakeholders have an interest, or are involved in, activities which support and compliment the CTI. These include research and educational institutions, universities, non-government organisations, community organisations, state/territory governments and local governments. The experience, knowledge and expertise of these stakeholders are valuable, and the Australian Government will seek to engage with these stakeholders in planning and implementing support for the CTI.


To contact the department in regards to the CTI, please email:

1 Coral Triangle Initiative on Coral Reefs, Fisheries and Food Security (CTI) Regional Plan of Action (RPOA), 1