Though mangroves occupy a mere 18 million hectares of the total land area of the earth, one-fourth of those are located in Indonesia, more than any other nation. Compared to other tropical rain forest types, mangrove forests are relatively new targets of conservation for the biodiversity and climate change aspects and sustainable use, though they are a vital natural resource for local socioeconomics and environmental preservation due to the diverse ecosystems they support.
From 2001 to 2006, JICA implemented a technical cooperation project called the Mangrove Information Center Project including a follow-up stage. Through that project, the Mangrove Information Center (MIC) organizational system was strengthened, a technical support system was created, and an information plan was formed, centered on the MIC as the only information base in the country for mangrove forests.
To build on the past assistance from JICA, Indonesia requested additional technical cooperation from Japan so that the knowledge accumulated at the MIC could continue to be used while promoting the expansion of sustainable mangroves forest management throughout Indonesia (supporting ground efforts in conservation) in line with their newly formulated national strategy.