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Climate Centre Here

The Attorney-General and Minister for Finance, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, has stepped up Fiji’s campaign for global action on climate change by chairing a high level UN panel on climate financing in
01 Apr 2016 12:15
Climate  Centre Here
The Attorney-General, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum (fifth from left), chairs the high level United Nations panel on climate financing in Korea.

The Attorney-General and Minister for Finance, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, has stepped up Fiji’s campaign for global action on climate change by chairing a high level UN panel on climate financing in Korea.

The gathering endorsed Fiji’s offer to host a centre for Small Island Developing States to work as a bloc to obtain finance from the international community for specific collective adaptation and mitigation projects.

At the first high-level dialogue on financing for development in Asia and the Pacific in Incheon, Korea, the A-G presided over a discussion.

It included high profile speakers such as the executive director of the Green Climate Fund Hela Cheikhrouhou, the director general of Global Green Growth Institute, Yvo de Boer, and the executive director of the Climate Policy Initiative, Tom Heller.

The panel also included representatives from Cambodia, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Korea and Vanuatu, which like Fiji, is recovering from the impact of a an extreme weather event – Cyclone Pam in March 2015.

The A-G told the gathering that financing climate resilience in affected countries is a crucial part of the world’s overall response to climate change.

He said: “It is impossible to have a one size fits all approach to financing the challenges which individual countries face in adapting to the impact of extreme weather events and rising sea levels. Some countries need a greater focus on adaptation measures while others require a bigger emphasis on mitigation.”

The A-G said many smaller economies did not have the economies of scale that exist in larger countries and needed a higher level of assistance.

“It is imperative that the global community addresses the different challenges faced by individual countries when it comes to climate finance.

In some instances, different regions will have very different needs and will require very different solutions. So the global community will need to be flexible and use different financing modules as it directs funding to where it is most needed”.

The participants endorsed Fiji’s offer to host a centre for Small Island Developing States to build capacity in accessing climate finance,develop bankable projects and build capacity. Multilateral agencies present, including UNESCAP, also indicated their support for the proposal.

The A-G said: “I’m delighted that we have got broad support for the setting up of a centre in Fiji to spearhead the efforts by Small Island Developing States – not only in the Pacific but throughout the world – to access the different finance sourcesto build our resilience to climate change.

“The adaptation measures we require are peculiar to our own particular needs. And as Tropical Cyclone Winston has shown, we need to move especially quickly to counter the effects of extreme weather events caused by climate change. With that in mind, the Fijian Government is offering to set aside the necessary resources to establish a centre for the SIDS countries in Fiji.”

The Fijian delegation to the Incheon meeting also included Fiji’s Ambassador to Korea, Filimone Kau, and the Director for Climate Change, Ovini Ralulu.

In the margins of the meeting, the delegation also met separately with executive director Cheikhrouhou of the Green Climate Fund.

Edited by Maraia Vula

Feedback:  jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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