Kuala Lumpur, 9 July 1985
The Government of Brunei Darussalam,
The Government of the Republic of Indonesia,
The Government of Malaysia,
The Government of the Republic of the Philippines
The Government of the Republic of Singapore and
The Government of the Kingdom of Thailand,
Member States of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) :
RECOGNIZING the importance of natural resources for present and future generations;
CONSCIOUS of their ever-growing value from a scientific, cultural, social and economic point of view;
CONSCIOUS also that the inter-relationship between conservation and socioeconomic development implies both that conservation is necessary to ensure sustainability of development, and that socioeconomic development is necessary for the achievement of conservation on a lasting basis;
RECOGNIZING the interdependence of living resources, between them and with other natural resources, within ecosystems of which they are part;
WISHING TO UNDERTAKE individual and joint action for the conservation and management of their living resources and the other natural elements on which they depend;
RECOGNIZING that international co-operation is essential to attain many of these goals;
CONVINCED that an essential means to achieve such concerted action is the conclusion and implementation of a. Agreement;
Have agreed as follows :
Conservation and Development
(2) To this end they shall develop national conservation strategies, and shall co-ordinate such strategies within the framework of a conservation strategy for the Region.
(2) To that effect they shall, in the formulation of all development plans, give as full consideration to ecological factors as to economic and social ones.
(3) The Contracting Parties shall, where necessary, take appropriate action with a view to conserving and managing natural resources of significant importance for two or several Contracting Parties.
Conservation of Species and Ecosystems
Species – genetic diversity
(2) To that end, they shall adopt appropriate measures to conserve animal and plant species whether terrestrial, marine and freshwater, and more specifically
- (a) conserve natural, terrestrial, freshwater and coastal or marine habitats;
- (b) ensure sustainable use of harvested species;
- (c) protect endangered species;
- (d) conserve endemic species; and
- (e) take all measures in their power to prevent the extinction of any species or sub-species.
(3) in order to fulfill the aims of the preceding paragraphs of this Article the Contracting Parties shall in particular endeavour to
- (a) create and maintain protected areas;
- (b) regulate the taking of species and prohibit unselective taking methods;
- (c) regulate and, where necessary, prohibit the introduction of exotic species;
- (d) promote and establish gene banks and other documented collections of animal and plant genetic resources.
Species – sustainable use
- (a) preventing decrease in the size of any harvested population to levels below those which ensure its stable recruitment and the stable recruitment of those species which are dependent upon, or related to them;
- (b) maintaining the ecological relationship between harvested, dependent and related populations of living resources of the ecosystem considered
- (c) restoring depleted populations to at least the levels referred to in sub-paragraph (a) of this paragraph;
- (d) preventing changes or minimizing risk of changes in the ecosystem considered which are not reversible over a reasonable period of time.
Take the appropriate and necessary legislative and administrative measures on harvesting activities in the light of their national interests whereby
- (a) such activities must conform to the management plans referred to above;
- (b) the conduct of such activities is controlled by a permit system;
- (c) all indiscriminate means of taking and the use of all means capable of causing local extinction of, or serious disturbance to, populations of a species of related species are prohibited;
- (d) such activities are prohibited or strictly regulated at certain periods, seasons or places of importance in the life cycle of the species;
- (e) such activities may be regulated more strictly, temporarily or locally in order to assist restoration f population levels or counterbalance any threat caused by special circumstances;
- f) special measures, such as restocking, are provided for whenever the conservation status of species so warrants;
- (g) trade and possession of specimens or products of specimens are regulated whenever such regulations meaningfully contribute to the implementation of the harvesting regulations;
Species – endangered and endemic
- (a) prohibit the taking of these species, except for exceptional circumstances by special allowance from the designated authorities f the Contracting Parties;
- (b) regulate the trade in and possession of specimens and products of those species accordingly;
- (c) especially protect habitat of those species by ensuring that sufficient portions are included in protected areas;
- (d) take all other necessary measures to improve their, conservation status, and restore their populations to the highest possible level.
(2) Each Contracting Party shall, whenever Possible, apply the above measures to species endangered at national level.
(3) The Contracting Parties recognize their special responsibility in respect of species that are endemic to areas under their Jurisdiction and shall undertake accordingly to take, wherever possible, all the necessary measures to maintain the population of such species at the highest possible level.
Vegetation Cover and Forest Resources
(2) They shall, in particular, endeavour to
(a) – control clearance of vegetation;
– endeavour to prevent bush and forest fires;
– prevent overgrazing by, inter alia, limiting grazing activities to periods and intensities that will not prevent regeneration of the vegetation;
(b) regulate mining and mineral exploration operations with a view to minimizing disturbance of vegetation and to requiring the rehabilitation of vegetation after such operations;
(c) set aside areas as forest reserves, inter alia, with a vi w to conserve the natural forest genetic resources;
(d) in reforestation and afforestation planning avoid as far as possible monoculture causing ecological imbalance;
(e) designate areas whose primary function shall be the,. maintenance of soil quality in the catchment considered and the regulation of the quantity and quality of the water delivered from it;
(f) ensure to the maximum extent possible the conservation of their natural forests, particularly mangroves with a view, inter alia, to maintaining maximum forest species diversity;
(g) develop their forestry management plans on the basis of ecological principles with a view to, maintaining potential for optimum sustained yield and avoiding depletion of the resource capital.
(a) establish land use policies aimed at avoiding losses of Vegetation cover, substantial soil loss, ad damages to the structure of the soil;
(b) take all necessary measures to control erosion, especially as it may affect coastal or freshwater ecosystems leading to silation, of downstream areas such as lakes or vulnerable ecosystems such as coral reefs, or damage critical habitats, in particular that of endangered or endemic species;
(c) take appropriate measures to rehabilitate eroded or degraded soils including rehabilitation of soil affected by mineral exploitation.
(2) They shall to that effect, in particular, endeavour to
- (a) undertake and promote the necessary hydrological research especially with a view to ascertaining the characteristics of each watershed;
- (b) regulate and control water utilization with a view to achieving sufficient and continuous supply of water for, inter alia, the maintenance of natural life supporting systems and aquatic fauna and flora:
- (c) when planning and carrying out water resource development projects take fully into account possible effects of .h projects on natural processes or on other renewable natural resources and prevent or minimize such effects.
Conservation of Ecological Processes
- (a) to promote environmentally sound agricultural practices by inter alia, controlling the application of pesticides, fertilizers and other chemical products for agricultural use, and by ensuring that agricultural development schemes, in particular for wetland drainage or forest clearance, pay due regard to the need to protect critical habitats as well as endangered and economically important species;
- (b) to promote pollution control and the development of environmentally sound industrial processes and products;
- (c) to promote adequate economic or fiscal incentives for the purposes of sub-paragraphs (a) and (b) above;
- (d) as far as possible to consider the originator of the activity which may lead to environmental degradation responsible for its prevention, reduction and control as well a-s, wherever possible, for rehabilitation and remedial measures required;
- (e) t. take into consideration, when authorizing activities likely to affect the natural environment, the foreseeable interactions between the new activities proposed and those already taking place in the same area, and the result of such interactions on the air, waters and soils of the area;
- (f) to pay particular attention to the regulation of activities which may have adverse effects on processes which are ecologically essential or on areas which are parti- cularly important or sensitive from an ecological point of vie., such as the breeding and feeding grounds of harvested species.
- (a) submitting activities likely to cause pollution of the air, soil, freshwater, or the marine environment, to control which shall take into consideration both the- cumulative effects of the pollutants concerned and the self-purificating aptitude of the recipient natural environment;
- (b) making such controls conditional on, inter alia, appropriate treatment of polluting emissions; and
- (c) establishing national environmental quality monitoring programmes, particular attention being paid to the effects of pollution on natural ecosystems, and co-operation in such programmes for the Region as a whole.
Environmental Planning Measures
Land use Planning
(2) The Contracting Parties shall in carrying out the provisions of paragraph (1) above, particularly consider the importance of retaining the naturally high productivity of areas such as coastal zones and wetlands.
(3) They shall, where appropriate, co-ordinate their land use planning with a view to conserving and managing natural resources of significant importance for two or several Contracting Parties.
(a) the ecological and biological processes essential to the functioning of the ecosystems of the Region;
(b) representative samples of all types of ecosystems of the Region;
(c) satisfactory population levels for the largest possible number of species of fauna and flora belonging to those ecosystems; .
(d) areas of particular importance because of their scientific, educational, aesthetic, or cultural interests; and taking into account their importance in particular as:
(a) the natural habitat of species of fauna and flora; particularly rare or endangered or endemic species;
(b) zones necessary for the maintenance of exploitable stocks of economically important species; (c) pools of genetic material and said refuge for species, especially endangered ones;
(c) sites of ecological, aesthetic or cultural interest;
(e) reference sources for scientific research;
(f) areas for environmental education.
They shall, in particular, take all measures possible in their power .to preserve those areas which are of an exceptional character and are peculiar to their country or the Region as well as those which constitute the critical habitats of endangered or rare species, of species that are endemic to a small area and of species that migrate between countries of Contracting Parties.
(2) Protected areas established pursuant to this Agreement shall be regulated and managed in such a way as to further the objectives for the purpose of which they have been created. Contracting Parties shall, wherever possible, prohibit within such protected areas activities which are inconsistent with such objectives.
(3) Protected areas shall include
- (a) National Parks
- (i) This expression denotes natural areas that are sufficiently large to allow for ecological self-regulation of one or several ecosystems, and which have not been substantially altered by human occupation or exploitation.
- (ii) National Parks shall be placed under public control, their boundaries shall not be altered nor shall any portion of any National Park be alienated except by the highest competent authority.
- (iii) National Parks shall be dedicated to conservation and to scientific, educational and recreational uses and the common welfare of the people.
- (b) Reserves
- (i) This expression denotes areas set aside for the purpose of preserving a specific ecosystem, the critical habitat of certain species of fauna or flora, a water catchment area or for any other specific purpose relating to the conservation of natural resources or objects or areas of scientific, aesthetic, cultural, educational or recreational interest.
- (ii) After reserves have been established their boundaries shall not be altered nor shall any portion of such reserves be alienated except by the authority establishing them or by higher authority.
- (iii) Reserves shall be dedicated to the purposes for which they have been created and, in the light of the national interests of the Contracting Parties any activity inconsistent with such purposes shall be prohibited.
(4) Contracting Parties shall, in respect of any protected area established pursuant to this Agreement
- (a) prepare a management plan and manage the area on the basis of this plan;
- (b) establish, wherever appropriate, terrestrial or aquatic buffer zones that shall be located around protected areas and which, in the case of marine areas, may include coastal land areas or watersheds of rivers flowing into the protected area; in such buffer zones all activities that may have harmful consequences on the ecosystems that such areas purport to protect shall be prohibited or regulated and activities which are consistent with the purpose of the protected area shall be promoted.
(5) Contracting Parties shall, in respect of any protected area established pursuant t- this Agreement, endeavour to
- (a) prohibit the introduction of exotic animal or plant species;
- (b) prohibit the se or release of toxic substances or pollutants which could ca-se disturbance or damage to protected ecosystems or to the species they contain;
- (c) to the maximum extent possible, prohibit or control any activity exercised outside protected areas when such an activity is likely to cause disturbance or damage to the ecosystems or species that such protected areas purport to protect.
(6) Contracting Parties shall co-operate in the development of principles, objectives, criteria and guidelines for the selection establishment and management of protected areas in the Region with a view to establishing a co-ordinated network of protected areas throughout the Region, giving particular attention to those of regional importance. An Appendix containing such principles, objectives, criteria and guidelines shall be drawn up in the light of the best scientific evidence as adapted to the conservation requirements of the Region and shall be adopted by a meeting of Contracting Parties.
(7) in addition to the establishment f the protected areas referred to in paragraph 3 of this Article, Contracting Parties shall promote, through the adoption of appropriate measures the conservation of natural areas by private owners, community or local authorities.
(2) In those cases where any such activities are undertaken, the Contracting Parties shall plan and carry them out so as to overcome or minimize any assessed adverse effects and shall monitor such effects with a vie, to taking remedial action as appropriate.
National Supporting Measures
Education, Information and Participation of the Public, Training
(2) They shall circulate as widely as possible information on the significance of conservation measures and their relationship with sustainable development objectives, and shall, as far as possible, organize participation of the public in the planning and implementation of conservation measures.
(3) Contracting Parties shall endeavour to, individually or in cooperation with other Contracting Parties or appropriate inter- national organizations, develop the programmes and facilities necessary to train adequate and sufficient scientific and technical personnel to fulfill the aims of this Agreement.
(2) They shall endeavour to allocate sufficient funds to the task necessary for the implementation of this Agreement, as well as sufficient qualified personnel with adequate enforcement powers.
(2) To that effect, they shall endeavour
- (a) to collaborate in monitoring activities;
- (b) to the greatest extent possible, coordinate their research activities;
- (c) to use comparable or standardized research techniques and procedures with a view to obtaining comparable data;
- (d) to exchange appropriate scientific and technical data, information and experience, on a regular basis;
- (e) whenever appropriate, to consult and assist each other with regard to measures for the implementation of this Agreement.
(3) In applying the principles of cooperation and coordination set forth above, the Contracting Parties shall forward to the Secretariat
- (a) Information of assistance in the monitoring of the biological status of the natural living resources of the Region;
- (b) Information, including reports and publications of a scientific, administrative or legal nature and, in particular information on – measures taken by the Parties in pursuance of the provisions of this Agreement; .
- – the status of species included in Appendix 1;
- – any other matter to which the Conference of the Parties may give special priority.
(2) To that end, they shall, in particular
- (a) cooperate with a view to controlling, preventing reducing or eliminating adverse environmental effects which may result in one Contracting Party from the utilization of such resources in another Party;
- (b) endeavour to conclude bilateral or multilateral agreements in order to secure specific regulations of their conduct in respect of the resources concerned;
- (c) as far as possible, make environmental assessments prior to engaging in activities with respect to shared natural resources which may create a risk of significantly affecting the environment of another sharing Contracting Party or other sharing Contracting Parties;
- (d) notify in advance the other sharing Contracting Party or the other sharing Contracting Parties of pertinent details of plans to initiate, or make a change in, the conservation or utilization of the resource which can reasonably be expected to affect significantly the environment m the territory of the other Contracting Party or Contracting Parties;
- (e) upon request of the other sharing Contracting Party or sharing Contracting Parties, enter into consultation concerning the above-mentioned plans;
- (f) inform the other sharing Contracting Party or other sharing Contracting Parties of emergency situations or sudden grave natural events which may have repercussions on their environment;
- (g) whenever appropriate, engage 1. joint scientific studies and assessments, with a view to facilitating cooperation with regard to environmental problems related to a shared resource, on the basis of agreed data.
(3) Contracting Parties shall especially cooperate together and, where appropriate, shall endeavour to cooperate with other Contracting Parties, with a view to
- (a) the conservation and management of
- – border or contiguous protected areas;
- – shared habitats of species listed in Appendix 1;
- – shared habitats of any other species of common concern;
- (b) the conservation, management and, where applicable regulation of the harvesting of species which constitute shared resources
- – by virtue of their migratory character, or
- – because they inhabit shared habitats.
Transfrontier Environmental Effects
(2) In order to fulfill this responsibility Contracting Parties shall avoid to the maximum extent possible and reduce to the minimum extent possible adverse environmental effects of activities under their Jurisdiction or control, including effects n natural resources, beyond the limits of their national jurisdiction.
(3) To that effect, they shall endeavour
- (a) to make environmental impact assessment before engaging in any activity that may create a risk of significantly affecting the environment or the natural resources of another Contracting Party or the environment or natural resources beyond national jurisdiction;
- (b) to notify in advance the other Contracting Party or Contracting Parties concerned of pertinent details of plans to initiate, or make a change in, activities which can reasonably be expected to have significant effects beyond the limits of national Jurisdiction;
- (c) to enter into consultation concerning the above-mentioned plans upon request of the Contracting Party or Contracting Parties in question;
- (d) to inform the Contracting Party or Contracting Parties in question of emergency situations or sudden grave natural events which may have repercussion beyond national jurisdiction.
(4) Contracting Parties shall, in particular, endeavour to refrain from actions which might directly or indirectly adversely affect wildlife habitats situated beyond the limits of national Jurisdiction especially habitats of species listed in Appendix I or habitats included in protected areas.
International Supporting Measures
Meeting of the Contracting Parties
(2) it shall be the function of the meetings of the Contracting Parties, in particular
- (a) to keep under review the implementation of this Agreement and the need for other measures, in particular the Appendices;
- (b) to adopt, review and amend as required any Appendix to this Agreement;
- (c) to consider reports submitted by the Contracting Parties in accordance with Article 28 or any other information which may be submitted by a Party, directly or through the Secretariat;
- (d) to make recommendations regarding the adoption of any Protocol or any amendment to this Agreement;
- (e) to establish working groups or any other subsidiary body as required to consider any matter related to this Agreement; (f) to consider and undertake any additional action including the adoption of financial rules, that may be required for the achievement of the purposes of this Agreement.
- (a) to convene and prepare the meetings of Contracting Parties;
- (b) to convene diplomatic conferences for the purpose of adopting Protocols;
- (c) to transmit to the Contracting Parties notifications, reports and other information received in accordance with this Agreement;
- (d) to consider inquiries by, and information from, the Contracting Parties, and to consult with them on questions relating to this Agreement.
- (e) to perform such other functions as may be assigned to it by the Contracting Parties;
- (f) to ensure the necessary coordination with other competent international bodies and in particular to enter into the such administrative arrangements as may be required for the effective discharge of the secretariat functions.
National Focal Points
Adoption of Protocols
(2) The Contracting Parties at a diplomatic conference, may adopt Protocols to this Agreement.
(3) The Protocols of this Agreement shall be subject to acceptance and shall enter it force on the thirtieth day after the deposit with the Depositary of the Instrument, )f Acceptance of all the Contracting Parties.
Amendment of the Agreement
(2) Amendments to this Agreement shall be adopted by a consensus of the Contracting Parties.
(3) Acceptance of amendments shall be notified to the Depositary in writing and shall enter into force on the thirtieth day following the receipt by the Depositary of notification of the acceptance by all the Contracting Parties.
(4) After the entry into force of an amendment to this Agreement any new Contracting Party to this Agreement shall become a Contracting Party to this Agreement as amended.
Appendices and Amendments to Appendices
(2) Amendments to an Appendix;
- (a) Any Contracting Party may propose amendments to an appendix at a meeting of the Contracting Parties;
- (b) Such amendments shall be adopted by a consensus of the Contracting Parties;
- (c) The Depositary shall without delay communicate the amendment so adopted to all Contracting Parties.
(3) The adoption and entry into force of a new Appendix to this Agreement shall be subject to the same procedure as for the adoption and entry into force of an amendment to an Appendix as provided for in paragraph (2) of this Article provided that, the new Appendix shall not enter into force until such time as the amendment to the Agreement enters into force.
Rules of Procedure
Settlement of Disputes
(2) Instrument of accession shall be deposited with the Depositary.
Entry into Force
(2) Thereafter, this Agreement shall enter into force with respect to any Contracting Party on the thirtieth day following the date of deposit of the instrument of accession by that Contracting Party.
Responsibility of the Depositary
- (a) of the deposit of instruments of ratification, acceptance or accession;
- (b) of the date on which the agreement will come into force.
Deposit and Registration
(2) As soon as the present Agreement enters into force, the text shall be transmitted by the Depositary to the Secretary-General of the United Nations for registration and publication, in accordance with Article 102 of the Charter of the United Nations.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF the undersigned, being duly authorized by their respective Governments, have signed this Agreement.
DONE at Kuala Lumpur on this 9th day of July in the year 1985 in a single copy in the English language.