REMARKS: Forum OIC, DO Veiogo at joint Pacific Financial Sector Climate Resilience Workshop

Opening Remarks

Forum OIC, Apaitia Veiogo

at the AFD/GGGI/PIF Workshop on Pacific Financial Sector Climate Resilience

17 May 2023

Good morning, excellencies, senior officials, distinguished participants, ladies and gentlemen. Let me welcome you all, on behalf of Secretary-General Henry Puna to the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat. I also want to extend a special welcome to our visiting dignitaries from AFD and GGGI.

2. I believe this morning, the results of the first phase of an exciting collaboration between AFD and GGGI, supported by PIFS on greening the financial systems in the Pacific will be presented to us. This is very important work that will enable our financial systems and institutions build resilience to cope with climate change impacts.

3. As we all know, our leaders have identified climate change as the region’s single greatest threat. But the nexus between the impacts of climate change and financial sector stability is not very obvious to many people. There are numerous risks that climate change could have on our financial systems and institutions resulting in financial instability and other social consequences for our members and region.

4. For example, climate change induced damage may have implications for lenders and borrowers, leading to increases in non-performing loans and impaired assets on the balance sheets of financial institutions. These are critical issues for our bankers and financial experts joining us this morning.

5. So, I am glad that AFD has taken the initiative to address this particular area of interest. Later this morning, we will see AFD and GGGI strengthen their collaboration in this work. PIFS is also happy to support this work because it will benefit our members and the region.

6. It is pleasing to have AFD’s Executive Director for Geographies, Mr Philippe Orliange, who is in charge of AFD’s engagement with partners and partner countries, and GGGI’s Deputy Director General, Ms Hellena McLeod with us this morning to hear this interest from PIFS but also views from our members attending this important workshop.

7. Your presence this morning is an important opportunity for PIFS and our members to share our various activities and workstreams on the 2050 Strategy, climate change, SDGs, SIDS, economic and trade areas for your information and maybe support as well.

8. Again, on behalf of the Secretary-General, I welcome you all and I wish you a successful workshop this morning and I thank you.–ENDS


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