With 76% of global coral species and 37% of global coral fish species within national boundaries, West Papua is one of the provinces in Indonesia with high fish production. In 2014, fish production in West Papua Province was valued at more than $US150 million. West Papua and especially Raja Ampat is quite famous as a world class scuba diving destination and thus another aim of the USAID SEA Project is to help ensure that Raja Ampat continues to be the primary destination for scuba diving entusiasts and also that other areas could learn from the good management practices being implemented in Raja Ampat and other parts of West Papua.
Various threats to marine conservation and sustainable fisheries initiatives in West Papua include IUU (illegal, unregulated, and unreported) fishing, weak law enforcement, rampant shark fishing and fining, lack of financial and human resources to sustainably maintain fisheries and conservation activities, and low number of leatherback turtle eggs predation in comparison to low hatchlings survival. Threat in MPA is the limited number and management of MPA sites.
The USAID SEA Project activities in West Papua is led by World Wildlife Fund-Indonesia (WWF-Indonesia), a conservation organization that serves as one of the USAID SEA implementation partners. The USAID SEA Project activities in the Province include promoting sustainable fisheries and responsible marine tourism practices, conducting various on-site data collections of fisheries and coral reef ecosystem, empowering the local stakeholders to conduct Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries Management (EAFM), as well as establishing Marine Protected Area (MPA) and its management body. On the provincial level, the USAID SEA Project is also supporting the establishment of Papua Barat Coastal Areas and Small Islands Zoning Plans (RZWPK3).