May 20, 2020

Minister reports on ten years of partnership with Norway

JAKARTA ( - Indonesian Environment and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya has reported to President Joko Widodo in an official letter (May 18) that there has been measured progress in the 10-year climate change partnership with Norway, detailing the partnership’s specific achievements. 

According to the minister, the contents of the letter were communicated directly to the President and received directions for immediate follow-up action.

“Indonesia will soon receive USD56 million as the first results-based payment for reductions in emissions from deforestation and forest degradation under a financial mechanism of the partnership,” Minister Nurbaya explained in writing to (May 20). 

“These emissions reductions, amounting to 11.2 million tons of CO2 equivalent, refer to data from 2016/2017. This assessment has undergone internationally-verified procedures designated by Norway,” the minister added.

She said that the next payment will be determined by the level of emissions reductions from efforts to scale down deforestation and forest degradation in 2017/2018, and the following years.

"The president ordered that the results-based payments from Norway should be used for community-based environmental recovery programs with as much community participation as possible, such as in tree planting and sustainable local economic revitalization initiatives,” she pointed out.

“The funds will be transferred in line with legal procedures to Indonesia’s Environmental Fund Management Agency (BPDLH) which was launched in October last year,” the minister affirmed.

To ensure the timely implementation of the first payment, which is expected in June, Minister Nurbaya has written to the Coordinating Minister for the Economy Airlangga Hartarto to request that a steering committee meeting be held to which the Norwegian Ambassador should be invited. 

As previously reported by (Apr 29), Minister Nurbaya recently delivered the latest update on the permanent moratorium on primary forests and peatlands. The area covered by the moratorium has remained stable at above 66 million hectares, or more than twice the size of Italy.

The following photos depict conservation peat forests in the  Leuser Ecosystem which form part of the permanent moratorium map and are inhabited by various flagship species.

The right moment to evaluate

In her letter to the President, Minister Nurbaya wrote that considering the Letter of Intent between Indonesia and Norway, which underlies the climate change partnership, was signed on 26th May ten years ago, this was an apt moment for an evaluation.

“In accordance with the agreement we reached in ministerial-level meetings held in Trondheim and Madrid last year, the existing LoI will be amended,” she confirmed.

“I have also written to our foreign minister to ask for diplomatic support in this whole process with the Norwegian government. In terms of technical substance, the foreign minister and I are clear -  we have discussed everything together,” Minister Nurbaya continued. 

The main purpose of the amendment, she elaborated, is to keep striving to improve the partnership’s governance at the levels of substance, implementation and review.

“It’s obvious that the goal of the amendment is not at all to weaken the partnership valuable’s contribution but rather to strengthen it,” she asserted.

The minister also attached to her letter a final draft of the amendment to the LoI with Norway, adding that “We have included mangroves and peatlands in the proposed LoI amendment as part of the new scope of emission reduction efforts.” 

The purpose of the partnership has been strengthened, that is to continue contributing to significant reductions in emissions from deforestation, forest degradation, and peatland and mangrove conversions,” Minister Nurbaya emphasized in closing.