AMMAN Takes Active Measures to Preserve the Gili Balu Seascape

AMMAN Takes Active Measures to Preserve the Gili Balu Seascape
West Sumbawa, 19 June 2024 – The beautiful seascape of Gili Balu, a cluster of small islands off the north coast of West Sumbawa (KSB) in the Indonesian province of West Nusa Tenggara (NTB), is an invaluable natural wealth and a source of livelihood for the surrounding community. The beauty of the eight islands comprising Gili Balu – Kenawa Island, Paserang Island, Kambing Island, Belang Island, Namo Island, Kalong Island, Mandiki Island, and Ular Island – offers enchanting and sustainable marine tourism potential.

To preserve the Gili Balu conservation area, AMMAN, one of Indonesia's largest copper-and-gold mining companies, has partnered with the West Nusa Tenggara Fisheries and Marine Service and the local community to manage and develop the Gili Balu marine conservation area.

“In Gili Balu, we are committed to preserving marine resources, supporting sustainable fishing practices, and creating economic opportunities for the local community through fisheries and aquaculture management supporting sustainable tourism,” said AMMAN Vice President of Social Impact, Priyo Pramono.

Priyo added that the AMMAN program in Gili Balu not only preserves nature but also creates new job opportunities, providing alternative sources of income for local residents. The program's main focus is the training and certification of the Tourism Awareness Groups (Pokdarwis) in the district of Poto Tano.

AMMAN and the West Nusa Tenggara Fisheries and Marine Service cooperate on several conservation management initiatives. First, AMMAN preserves and restores the marine ecosystem by monitoring, protecting, and rehabilitating fish populations and habitats, including coral reefs, seagrass beds, and mangrove forests. Second, the partners improve the tourism-related skills of local residents to support the development of ecotourism in Gili Balu, including training and certification of tour guides, tourism service providers, water sports operators, and lifeguards.

Third, improving marine infrastructure and providing technical guidance on sustainable fishing for local fishers and fisheries operators to strengthen resource management. Lastly, raising public awareness of preserving coastal and marine environments with a focus on sustainable tourism.

The Gili Balu marine conservation program uses the expert scientific and technical resources of the Center for Coastal and Marine Resource Studies (PKSPL) of the Bogor Agricultural Institute (IPB), a top-tier Indonesian university.

“AMMAN has incorporated environmental and social factors in the company’s goal-setting process, manifested in their commitment to implementing environmental management and protection programs, including social community programs,” said Andy Afandy, Deputy Head of PKSPL IPB Natural Resource and Environmental Management Program.

Andy added that this is outlined in the Gili Balu Transformasea Program: Integrated Ecosystem-Based Marine Ecotourism Development, which is implemented along with programs to manage, protect, and preserve ecosystems. Gili Balu Transformasea is a public-private community partnership program that places communities at the forefront of conservation efforts with the support of government and private sector organizations.

The Gili Balu conservation and development program reflects the NTB government's policy of making Gili Balu a flagship tourism project.

During the unveiling of the Gili Balu logo late last year, Drs. H. Lalu Gita Ariadi, M.Si, Acting Governor of West Nusa Tenggara (NTB), stated that the development of Gili Balu is a strategic step to increase the tourism appeal of the provinces and improve the economy of the surrounding community.

“Gili Balu, as a flagship project, aims to develop the beautiful small islands around the Poto Tano area. Gili Balu can become a stunning tourism destination, creating new economic opportunities and providing positive benefits for the local community,” he stated.

Gita Ariadi added that efforts to develop Gili Balu are intended to display the islands’ natural charm and reinforce collaboration in developing NTB as Indonesia’s primary sustainable tourism destination.

The efforts to conserve Gili Balu are a component of the AMMAN Community Development and Empowerment Program (PPM), which focuses on environmental preservation, specifically the marine environment. This program aligns with Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 8 to promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, productive and comprehensive employment, and decent work for all, and SDG 14 to conserve the oceans, seas, and marine resources for responsible use to support sustainable development.

Sustainable tourism will allow us and future generations to enjoy Gili Balu's natural charms. Cooperation among the various stakeholders and the private sector will catalyze efforts to preserve, protect, and promote the beautiful Gili Balu seascape.
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