The National Project launch of the Philippine component of the GEF-UNEP Project, Removing Barriers to Invasive Species Management in Production & Protection Forest (IAS Project) was held at the Cocoon Boutique Hotel last 9 January 2013. The event marked the official start of Project activities in the country. Led by DENR Undersecretary, Ernesto Adobo Jr., and the Director of the Protected Areas & Wildlife Bureau, Dir. Theresa Mundita Lim, the successful launch was attended by more than 70 participants from the government and private sector.
The Assistant Secretary for the Foreign-Assisted and Special Projects Office (FASPO), Rommel Abesamis, welcomed the attendees to the event. This was followed by a message from Dr. A. Sivapragasam, the Project’s International Project Coordinator based in CABI, Malaysia. He described the Project as an important undertaking that binds four countries. The Project, according to Dr. Siva, provides bridging support to the four participating countries (Indonesia, Cambodia, Philippines & Vietnam) in the area of invasive alien species (IAS) management. The Project Description, including the impact of IAS was given by Dir. Lim.