1.                The First Meeting of the Sub-Regional Ministerial Steering Committee (MSC) on Transboundary Haze Pollution was held on 9 November 2006 in Cebu City, Philippines.

2.                The MSC noted that smoke haze affected ASEAN countries, especially Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand, and that land and forest fires and smoke haze have also profound socio-economic implications.

3.                The MSC further noted that the Sub-Regional Ministerial Meeting (SRMM) on Transboundary Haze Pollution in Pekanbaru, Indonesia, on 13 October 2006, was an important meeting in setting up the MSC and recognising a sustained Plan of Action (PoA) is needed and the problem should be solved and if necessary with international assistance.

4.                The MSC congratulated Indonesia for hosting the Regional Workshop on Developing an Integrated Action Plan on Dealing with Transboundary Haze Pollution on 2 November 2006 in Jakarta, Indonesia. The workshop has been very useful in profiling the issue.  Many international and regional organisations have expressed interest during and after the Workshop to participate and assist.

5.                The MSC agreed with Indonesia’s proposal that Member Countries of the MSC may, through the Central Government of Indonesia, wish to adopt one or more fire-prone districts/regencies for enhancing capacity to deal with land and forest fires.

6.                The MSC endorsed the Terms of Reference (TOR) for the MSC on Transboundary Haze Pollution; and Indonesia’s Plan of Action in Dealing with Transboundary Haze Pollution.

7.                Indonesia will chair the MSC and TWG for the first two (2) years.

8.                The MSC also recognises the urgency and importance of following up on the Regional Workshop by organising a high-level international conference in December 2006 in Indonesia to generate support and partnership for the implementation of the PoA.

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