REMARKS: PSIDS Chair, Samoa PM Mata’afa at the Road to COP27 UK-Pacific Climate Dialogue

Statement by Honourable Fiame Naomi Mataafa
Prime Minister of Samoa
and Chair of PSIDS
at the

Wednesday 23rd February 2022 (virtual)


Heads of State and Government
Rt Hon. Alok Sharma, President of COP26
Ladies and Gentlemen

The 26th instalment of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26) was convened from 1 – 13 November 2021 and considered as one of, if not, the most important COP to date within the UNFCCC processes, as it was COP26 in Glasgow that the world would come together and collectively finalize the Paris Rulebook.
By any measure, this was indeed a difficult feat to achieve considering the challenges compounded by the COVID pandemic which resulted in barriers for hosting COP26, as well as the logistical obstacles to physically participate in Glasgow. We commend the UK and Right Honourable Alok Sharma as President of COP26 for your leadership.
Despite these challenges, and in some way because of them, the Pacific region’s coordination and preparation well in advance of Glasgow was instrumental in our consolidated efforts at COP26. Eleven (11) of our member countries and close to 150 delegates physically attended, All were tasked with ensuring that the imperative of conveying our Pacific concerns and priorities was well served and coordinated prior to and during COP26.
In this regard, I am referring to the cooperation, coordination and partnerships between our member countries, and our regional organizations, including their combined efforts and partnerships with representatives of the UK Presidency, traditional development partners, our Pacific youth, and many other key and relevant stakeholders.
COP26 also saw a very effective Pacific representation by a small contingent of High-Level Political Champions, who successfully championed key PSIDS priorities at the political level. This was viewed as critical for ensuring that technical expertise was strongly supported by political direction and vice versa.
The conclusion of COP26, reflected measures of both its successes and shortfalls, however we must continue our work and maintain our momentum as we now turn our attention and focus to navigating a path to COP27.
The recently concluded Pacific SIDS Post-COP26 Analysis Meeting was our region’s first gathering of 2022 intended as our first step forward for planning
and preparation to build a strong voice for our respective constituencies, and our regional collective.
The Pacific has begun its work towards COP27. The Pacific Voyage Plan that guides our preparations is being finalised for operationalisation. Our negotiating priorities remain consistent, and our positions united and steadfast in the hope for a 1.5-degree world.
I would like to share some key messages from the PSIDS Post COP26 Meeting last week: The PSIDS would like to:
a. see how the imperatives from Glasgow deliver on their mandates- to this end we would welcome regular updates on the commitments made in Glasgow
on Finance including for adaptation.
b. hear what plans there are for advancing the dialogue on Loss and Damage.
c. continue ongoing dialogue and relationship with the UK COP26 presidency which had proven to be very successful for the PSIDS.
d. invite the Egypt COP27 Presidency to engage with our region in preparation for COP27
e. gain an early understanding of the thematic focus for COP27, so that the Pacific can plan for targeted and dedicated preparations
f. include engagement with youth and women networks in the Pacific, as a priority for COP27.
g. ensure continuation of more targeted dialogue with the World’s biggest emitters and
h. see further development of coalitions and partnerships with like-minded Parties and explore potential linkages with non-State actors; all of whom are considered as critical partners for supporting the call of the Pacific.

Allow me to conclude by intentionally stating the obvious, that 2022 again presents our region with the greatest of our challenges – the assurance of the survival of our Pacific people from the ever-pervasive reach of climate change.





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