Joint Statement by the Government of Vanuatu and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat
10 am (Port Vila Time) Thursday
23 May 2019
PORT VILA, Vanuatu – Following an invitation from the Government of Vanuatu, a team of senior Pacific officials are in Port Vila this week to peer review the development of Vanuatu’s first Voluntary National Review (VNR) report on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the SDGs.
The peer review will assist the Government of Vanuatu in their final VNR preparations ahead of presentation of the Report at the High-Level Political Forum on SDGs at the United Nations in July, while also identifying key lessons and best practices for sharing with other Pacific countries.
The Prime Minister of Vanuatu, Hon Charlot Salwai, welcomed the team and noted his support for the inclusive nature of the VNR process.
“My government is undertaking the VNR process to help support the national review of our People’s Plan 2030, while also demonstrating our commitment to the 2030 Agenda. It is an opportunity to take stock, celebrate good progress but also address the gaps so we can deliver on our promises to our people for prosperity that sustainably utilises our resources,” said Prime Minister Salwai.
The peer review team, assisted by the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, are consulting with various Government departments, representatives of development partners, non-government organisations and the private sector in Port Vila. At the end of the consultations, the team will present recommendations to the Government and the development partners on its VNR process and report.
The Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum, Dame Meg Taylor, acknowledged and congratulated the Government of Vanuatu for being the first Pacific country and first country globally to volunteer to a peer review.
“Vanuatu continues to lead the way in joining up domestic, regional and global policy processes with a clear focus on ensuring inclusive development and sustainable resource management. The peer review initiative demonstrates a willingness to be transparent and to share innovations and learning from others in a very collaborative way,” said Dame Meg Taylor.
“This Peer Review is an important part of the implementation of the Pacific Roadmap for Sustainable Development endorsed by Pacific Forum Leaders in 2017 which reinforces the Blue Pacific’s commitment to the SDGs and Pacific-grown solutions to our development challenges,” said Dame Meg Taylor.
The Review team comprises Mr Wilson Gusamo (Government of PNG), Ms Francella Strickland (Government of Samoa), Ms Suzanne Bent (Government of Australia) and Ms Vani Catanasiga (CSO Representative from the Fiji Council of Social Services).
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