Sri Lanka train

5th Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities of Asia Pacific

2–5 October 2023 | Colombo, Sri Lanka


The Forum brought together diverse countries with unique environmental challenges, fostering a spirit of collaboration to address the crises in the region.

Final report

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Sri Lanka train

Photo by UNEP

The Asia and Pacific region features some of the most diverse and rich ecosystems in the world. The region is home to a high number of endemic species and unique ecosystems, including 17 of the 36 global biodiversity hotspots and seven of the 17 megadiverse countries. Despite its global ecological significance, the region is facing mounting challenges due to unsustainable exploitation of natural resources, deforestation, and other drivers of ecosystem destruction. The region, in recognition of the urgent need to curb nature and biodiversity loss, is scaling up collective actions, including the effective implementation of biodiversity-related multilateral environmental agreements.

To discuss ways to tackle these pressing environmental issues the Fifth Forum of Ministers of the Environment for Asia-Pacific brought together Ministers and Environment Authorities from across the region. This vital gathering, which has been convening biennially since 2015, aimed to foster collaboration and policy development, promoting sustainable development strategies that are crucial for our shared future.

As with previous years the meeting was be preceded by a Youth Environment Forum, which convened on 1-2 October. This was followed by the Major Groups and Stakeholders Environment Forum on 3 October 2023.

The Senior Officials meeting on the 4 October gathered regional inputs to the resumed 6th session of the UN Environment Assembly, which will take place on 26 February – 1 March 2024, under the theme “Effective, inclusive, and sustainable multilateral actions to tackle climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution.” 

The Ministerial Segment on 5 October took place in the form of a ministerial dialogue on the UNEA 6 theme and a multistakeholder dialogue on multilateral environmental cooperation to tackle, climate change, biodiversity loss, and pollution.

The final day of the event featured excursions to Sri Lanka’s nature and cultural sites. Several side events were also held during the week.

The meeting took place from 3-6 October 2023 in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

The Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB) writers for this meeting were Wanja Nyingi, Ph.D.; Emma Vovk; and Tallash Kantai. The Digital Editor was Francis Dejon. The Editor was Leila Mead.

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Event organised by


Non-state coalitions