Anticipatory Action in the Pacific – Sensitization Workshop
28 – 29 March 2023
Colleagues and friends
1. A warm welcome to Fiji and to the Anticipatory Action in the Pacific Workshop hosted by the Pacific Resilience Partnership, and it is indeed a partnership with this workshop supported by the different UN agencies, regional organizations, partners and particularly you representatives from our member states who will ultimately be the beneficiaries of outcomes and actions that arise from the discussions today.
2. We have all seen the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report which paints a dire picture for humanity, and for us here in the Pacific, it is our daily lived reality that is only going to become even more challenging. The recent events in Vanuatu and New Zealand, highlight the importance of being prepared, of understanding the risks that could have the potential to further amplify our existing vulnerabilities and of working together to overcome these challenges.
3. So, the discussions over the next few days are timely – how can our people and communities anticipate and be prepared for potential shocks and in anticipating these shocks, be able to safeguard their lives and their livelihoods. It is very much aligned with the visions of our Leaders through the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific which advocates for all Pacific people to remain resilient to the impacts of climate change and disaster and are able to lead safe, secure and prosperous lives. It speaks to the intent of the Framework for Resilient Development in the Pacific (FRDP) which underscores risk-informed development underpinned by an integrated, whole of sector and whole of stakeholder approach.
4. We also see this workshop as a learning platform – for all of us – those with the unique knowledge of our homes and communities and those that bring a more global nuance and expertise to the discussions. We have to build on the good practices from within our region and countries, but also take the lessons and experiences from outside of the region that can be of value to our own regional and national efforts.
5. I am sure that most of you would have heard of the Pacific Resilience Facility or PRF. This is a yet another financing modality that our Leaders have agreed to establish as a Pacific led, Pacific owned and Pacific managed facility that, at some levels, will have elements of anticipatory financing whereby communities can access funds for building resilience in their own localized contexts. WE hope that our donor partners can see merit I this kind of approach.
6. You may also be aware that discussions on the implementation of the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific are underway, with our member countries at the helm of these discussions. I encourage our member country representatives and participants to share with colleagues at home what you have discussed here and the outcomes, so that our visions and approaches for a secure, safe and prosperous Pacific is informed by the most current, evidence-based and relevant approaches. Despite the challenges that face us as a region, we are all committed to work together as one to rise above these challenges and to forge our own pathway for a brighter future.
7. Excellencies and Colleagues, I encourage that you make the most of this workshop for frank and open discussions with the objective of strengthening existing approaches and practices.
8. I thank the organizers for the opportunity to share remarks from your Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat and I wish everyone a fruitful workshop. –CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY