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Statement by SG Tuiloma Neroni Slade at signing of three 10th EDF projects

STATEMENT BY THE REGIONAL AUTHORISING OFFICER , MR TUILOMA NERONI SLADE, SECRETARY GENERAL, PACIFIC ISLANDS FORUM SECRETARIAT


SIGNING CEREMONY OF THREE FINANCING AGREEMENTS FOR PROJECTS UNDER 10TH EDF FOR THE PACIFIC REGION

SUVA, FIJI ISLANDS
3 MARCH 2010

 

Ambassador of the European Union Delegation for the Pacific
Your Excellencies,
Heads and Representatives of CROP Agencies
Ladies and Gentlemen


Welcome once again to the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat and thank you very much for your presence this morning to witness the signing of the first three Financing Agreements under the Regional Indicative Programme for the Pacific, financed through the 10th European Development Fund.

2. I would like to thank the European Union for funding these three important projects:


• Scientific Support for the Management of Coastal and Oceanic Fisheries in the Pacific Islands Region (SCICOFish)
• Deep Sea Minerals in the Pacific Islands Region: Legal Framework and Resource Management
• Development of sustainable tuna fisheries in Pacific ACP countries phase 2 (DevFish )
with a combined value of nearly € 22 million.

3. In November 2008 in Strasbourg, I signed the Regional Strategy Paper and the Regional Indicative Programme for the Pacific for 2008-2013. A total amount of € 95 million was committed by the European Commission to the Pacific Region to develop new regional projects focusing principally on strengthening Regional Economic Integration on the one hand and the Sustainable Management of Natural Resources and the Environment on the other hand.

4. In the beginning of last year a Technical Evaluation Committee (TEC) comprising members of the PACP countries, myself and the EC met and considered the recommendations and proposals submitted by CROP agencies and international organizations with regional offices in the Pacific . Nine “High Priority Concept Notes” were identified and it is good to see that three of them have matured into the three Financing Agreements we will sign today.

5. All three projects focus on the second focal area of Sustainable Management of Natural Resources and the Environment. As the Ambassador of the European Union has already highlighted the details of the benefits which each of these projects will bring to the region I will not repeat these.

6. I congratulate and commend the CROP agencies that put together the project proposals that would now receive funding support under the 10th EDF Pacific Regional Indicative Programme. The challenge now is for those agencies that have been entrusted with the responsibility of implementing these very important regional projects to step up their efforts to ensure that these projects are implemented in an efficient, effective and timely manner where key milestones, outputs and timelines are met.

7. The ultimate beneficiaries of these regional projects are the people of the Pacific. Their ultimate success will ultimately be determined by the difference they make to the lives of the people of the Pacific. That is the ultimate goal of these regional projects and must remain also our ultimate goals, those of us that have been charged with the responsibility to implement these regional projects.

8. With an eye to the future I would like to inform you that we are working very hard with the European Union Delegation on the preparation and submission of the next Annual Action Programme for 2010 which will hopefully commit a further €28 million to implement the Regional Aid for Trade Strategy under focal area one of Regional Economic Integration and € 2 million for the Technical Cooperation Facility.

9. This means that by the end of this year we would have nearly committed close to 60 % of the total allocation of the 10th EDF for the Pacific Regional allocation.

10. Looking at 2011 I hope to see at least €10 million committed to tackle the very important issue of Climate Change and its impact on the livelihoods of the people living in the Small Island States.

11. In concluding I would like to thank the European Union once again for its continued support to the Pacific Region in implementing the Pacific Plan and the Leaders determination of the regional development priorities. I also once again thank all of you, who are able to be present this morning.

Thank you.
 

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