RSO Engages in 3rd Coast Guard Global Summit (CGGS)
From 30 October to 2 November 2023, the Regional Support Office of the Bali Process (RSO) was fortunate to participate and engage in the 3rd Coast Guard Global Summit (CGGS) in Tokyo, Japan.
Organised by the Japan Coast Guard, and supported by the Nippon Foundation, the event brought together the heads of Coast Guards from more than 100 countries, as well as relevant international and regional organisations, and was the first in-person summit since 2019. Evan Jones, RSO Programme Coordinator attended on behalf of the RSO.
The first CGGS was held in Japan in 2017 in recognition of the growing ocean challenges facing our world, and the need for increased collective action and multilateral cooperation. With a specific focus on human resource development and information exchange, the CGGS is fundamental to fostering deeper engagement amongst Bali Process Member States to tackle issues of irregular migration, search and rescue, and people smuggling.
The RSO is part of the "Coast Guard Global Human Resources Development" Core Member Group, established under the umbrella of the World Coast Guard Summit. Pilot programs with different themes are carried out within the Core Member Group which consists of 12 countries (Australia, United Kingdom, Brunei, Indonesia, Japan, Georgia, Spain, Italy, Pakistan, Peru, Romania, and Türkiye) and 6 International / Regional Organisations (IMO, UNODC, EMSA, EFCA, FRONTEX, and the Bali Process).
“Throughout the event, irregular migration and avoiding loss of life at sea was a constant point of discussion” said Evan Jones, RSO Programme Manager. “Only through greater information sharing, connectivity across Coast Guards and entities with coast guard functions, can we ensure that irregular maritime movements across the region have access to protection and safety of life at sea.”
In recognition of the importance of the event, Japan’s Prime Minister, Fumio Kishida attended the welcome reception and delivered a Keynote Address highlighting the importance of the summit and the need to work together for maritime security and preservation.
The meeting was also well attended by Bali Process Members and Observers, including – but not limited to – Australia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Fiji, Indonesia, Korea, New Zealand Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand and UNODC.
Smuggling by sea remains a consistent and ongoing concern within Bali Process Member States, both as it relates refugee movements across the Andaman Sea and Bay of Bengal, but also other irregular movements of people.
The RSO seeks to build upon many of the discussions from the Summit to build new synergies and to further foster cross-regional dialogue, capacity building, policy development and action. Furthermore, we are committed to working through the CGGS Core Member Group to support Human Resource Development and innovation.