Muscat, Oman – A national workshop, organized by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Affairs (MECA) took place on 25-28 June 2018, bringing together participants from the ministries of agriculture and planning, the national statistics office (NSO), as well as the academia to discuss UNCCD reporting and the national strategy.
The workshop paid tribute to the World Day to Combat Desertification 2018, focusing on the importance of fighting desertification in the Sultanate and protecting productive land by encouraging innovative investments. Participants also discussed technical details of the national reporting process and ways to improve the national strategy by aligning it with the UNCCD 2018-2030 Strategic Framework and including the three land-based indicators to monitor progress towards halting land degradation.
Two field trips were also organized as part of the workshop: the visit to a plantation that is part of the “one million palm tree initiative, ” a convincing example of a transformative project. Another trip took workshop participants to the new botanical garden, which is scheduled to open in 2020 and will feature one of the largest regional seed banks, established to preserve native species of plants.