The Natuna Islands, an archipelago of 272 small islands in Riau Islands province, are Indonesia’s northernmost island chain and are located off the northwest coast of Borneo between Peninsular and Bornean Malaysia. Closer to Ho Chi Minh City than Jakarta, the island chain is remote and relatively undeveloped, but has received international attention in recent years as China’s “Nine-Dash Line” claim to the South China Sea overlaps with Indonesia’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) off the coast of Natuna, triggering disputes between Indonesian authorities and Chinese foreign fishing vessels. In July 2017, the GOI announced it was renaming the waters around the Natuna Islands the “North Natuna Sea” in place of the South China Sea.
Furthermore, the East Natuna Gas Field (formerly Natuna D-Alpha), located northeast of the Natuna Islands and within Indonesia’s EEZ, is considered to be potentially the largest gas field in Southeast Asia with estimated recoverable natural gas reserves of 46 trillion cubic feet. Several multinational public-private partnerships have formed to develop the gas field, but significant development has proven challenging due to commercial and technical constraints.
While political priorities and media discussion center on security concerns, the GOI seeks international support and cooperation for development and investment in Natuna. Despite the wealth of natural resources surrounding Natuna, the islands and the corresponding district government (Kabupaten Natuna) and provincial Riau Islands government face many development challenges, including education, inclusive economic development, and fisheries management. Further, while much attention is put on the abundance of large foreign fishing vessels in the waters surrounding Natuna, livelihoods and income for many Natuna residents are dependent on small-scale artisanal fishing. In 2018, the GOI, including the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (MMAF), the Coordinating Ministry of Maritime and Investment Affairs, and the local governments successfully launched an Integrated Marine and Fisheries Center in Natuna that provides basic infrastructure such as fish landing sites, ice machines, and the foundation for further private, government, or foreign investment to build a hub for fish processing and potential export. Other recent efforts, such as the GOI’s relocation of fishers from Java to Natuna, emphasize their pressing desire to increase fishing effort and overall fishing activity in the area.
At the same time, additional information on fisheries specific to the North Natuna Sea–fish stock, species, market value, fishing effort, catch per unit effort, and total catch by small-scale fishers and foreign vessels–is still needed to improve Indonesia’s strategic planning for maritime security, fisheries management, and economic development.
The North Natuna Sea is part of the larger Fisheries Management Area (FMA, or WPP in Indonesian) 711 which includes several Indonesia provinces. While some data does exist on FMA 711, the area itself is very large. Fish stock data for WPP 711 is an aggregation of information from several provinces, and is likely to be heavily influenced by fish landings and fishing effort out of Pontianak, West Kalimantan, and will not provide an accurate foundation on which to base fisheries management planning specific to the North Natuna Sea.
This purpose of this assignment is to conduct a rapid assessment on the fisheries sector in the North Natuna Sea that will inform fisheries management, support economic development, guide investment, and assist Government of Indonesia’s (GOI) decision making in management of its valuable and underutilized natural resources. This assessment will help USAID to advance Indonesia’s self-reliance to manage sustainable fisheries that support long-term economic development in Natuna.
In line with the U.S. National Security Strategy, the Natural Resources Safeguards and Security program area under USAID’s Indo-Pacific Vision, U.S. Embassy Jakarta’s Integrated Country Strategy, and USAID Indonesia’s draft Country Development Cooperation Strategy, this assessment will provide key information to assist Indonesia to sustainably manage its fisheries in a remote and highly strategic area.
Social Impact Inc. is seeking an individual to fulfil the role of Technical Specialist of Fisheries Assessment for North Natuna Sea.
The assessment will be conducted in direct coordination with the GOI. Ahead of the start date of the assessment, USAID will engage with GOI counterparts and provide a point of contact, but the assessment team will likely work directly with various directorates of the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries.
The assessment team will also work closely with the USAID SEA project to facilitate collection of data, link to ongoing USAID activities in marine conservation and fisheries management.
- Assessment Work Plan, to include assessment methodology and instruments that will be applied to answer assessment questions; assessment schedule, list of people/groups to be interviewed, timeframe, and draft schedule of data collection activities.
- In-briefing, to present and discuss a draft work plan.
- Mid-term Briefing, update on progress, opportunities, challenges, and any requested revisions to schedule.
- Debriefing, PowerPoint presentation of findings with bulleted response to assessment questions, and discussion on development of recommendations.
- Draft Assessment Report, clearly describing findings, conclusions, and recommendations. USAID will provide comments on the Draft Assessment Report within ten working days of submission.
- Final Assessment Report following USAID standard report format and branding guidelines, within 10 working days of receiving Mission comments on the draft report. The format of the final report is provided below. The report will be submitted in English, electronically.
Reporting: The Tech Specialist will report to the Assessment Team Leader and work closely with the Indonesia MEL Program, MEL Specialist.
Estimated LOE: 35 days.
Due to the COVID-19 global pandemic, the initial timeline for the assessment may be subject to change. Flexibility and creativity will be required to collect data, conduct interviews, present findings, and draft and submit the report. Team members should be selected with these factors in mind; access to information technology resources and strong internet connection at team members’ respective homes may be required. Flexible hours are needed to communicate with the USAID team in the United States and in Indonesia, as necessary. While travel is likely needed to complete the scope of work, creative approaches with respect to public health should be considered for interviews, site visits, and to engage with fishers, GOI officials, USAID, and other stakeholders. Due to the global pandemic and overall sensitivities in Natuna, close and frequent coordination with USAID is strongly encouraged.
- Possess extensive knowledge of Indonesian fisheries management and the fishing industry, preferably with experience in Natuna and a detailed understanding of local socio-economic and environmental issues.
- The candidate must have knowledge, experience, and understanding of GOI policy and approach to fisheries management in Natuna.
- Bachelors with over 10 years’ experience. Masters or PhD preferred.
- Excellent analytical and writing skills.
- Ability and experience in conducting remote data collection.
Come join our energetic and innovative team! We offer you the opportunity to play a leading role in the growth of our company, work as part of a creative and committed team, and make a difference in the well-being of our world.
To learn more about Social Impact, please visit our website: http://www.socialimpact.com
SI is an EEO/AA/ADA Veterans Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability or protected veteran status.