Preventing Danger of Mercury Pollution, RI Presented the Ratification Instrument of Minamata Convention to UN

 

New York, USA: "The Minamata Convention not only synergizes, but also strengthens existing rules of mercury trading and circulation at the existing  national level," explained the Foreign Minister Retno L.P. Marsudi after presenting the ratification instrument of the convention at United Nations Headquarters on the sidelines of the 72nd UN General Assembly (22/9).

Minister Retno presented the instrument of the Government's ratification of the Minamata Convention on Mercury to the UN Legal Counsel, Under-Secretary-General Miguel de Serpa Soares. "The presentation of this ratification instrument is a concrete manifestation of the Indonesian Government's commitment to protect the people from the dangers of mercury contamination as well as the affirmation of the commitment to achieve the goal of Sustainable Development 2030," she said.

The Government of Indonesia ratified the Minamata Convention on Mercury through Law no. 11 of 2017 signed by President Joko Widodo on September 20, 2017 and promulgated in the State Gazette no. 209 Year 2017. With the issuance of the law, the practice of mercury circulation and utilization throughout the territory of Indonesia is now bound by the provisions of the Convention.

The Indonesian Government's fast move in ratifying this convention is the result of strong coordination between various Ministries and Institutions, as well as the support of the Parliament.

This step is the fulfillment of the constitutional mandate to protect the Indonesian people from the threat of mercury pollution that endangers the health and ecosystem of the environment.

It is undeniable that mercury is still widely used by communities in the mining sector; especially small scale gold mining, industry and health. By ratifying the Convention, the Government will more strictly regulate the circulation and utilization of mercury by the public.

This ratification also opens opportunities for international cooperation to increase public awareness and knowledge about the dangers of mercury, and to facilitate access to health-friendly and environmental-friendly replacement technologies.

UNEP classifies Mercury as a "global threat to human and environmental health" because of its harmful effects on human health and environmental ecosystems. Indonesia is one of the 92 signatory countries of the Minamata Convention in Kumamoto, Japan on October 10, 2013. This Convention has now been signed by 128 countries and came into force on 16 August 2017, 90 days after the receipt of the 50th country ratification instrument (Romania) on May 16, 2017. (source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs)​