Yap, FSM – The Governor of Yap state in the Federated States of Micronesia, Hon. Sebastian Anefal has welcomed the Forum Compact Peer Review undertaken of the FSM national government and the states and thanked the FSM Peer Review team for “coming way out to the western most corner of FSM.”
He expressed interest in the outcomes of the review process.
“I am very interested in the outcome of the review and see how other countries look at what we are doing because when we are on the inside, we cannot see everything that is around us. The Forum Compact Peer Review will be in a better position to give us an independent assessment of what we are doing not only at the national level but also in the state governments,” said Yap state Governor Hon. Anefal.
“I want to thank the FSM national government for including us in the peer review because it will give us another perspective individually, as the state and national governments.” Governor Anefal said as a state, Yap must now do something to fill up the gap that is being left by the annual reductions in the funds from the Compact with the United States which will end in 2023.
“We as a state and the national government must try to mitigate the financial challenge by developing and growing the economy by attracting foreign investment through the provision of sound policies for the growth of the private sector.”
Governor Anefal added: “The recently convened Development Partners’ Forum was a very bold move by the national government. We have had similar meetings in the past but they have been held outside of FSM. This recent one held in the country has allowed us to know who the development partners are. It has given us the opportunity to collaborate and be more receptive. It has allowed us to establish channels of communications at the informal level.”
On the need to set up an overseas development assistance function within Yap state, Governor Anefal said: “There was not a need to set up such a function under the initial Compact of Free Association with the US but now with the amended Compact, ODA has become an important function of the government. Yap was the first state to establish a Grant Writer position to assist in engaging with other development partners and we are considering expanding the function to coordination of ODA for Yap. But we need resources to set up this function.”
The Governor however noted that seeking additional development partner funding is not a long-term solution.
“Yap state needs to restructure its public services and governance systems and until and unless Yap state builds its local capacity to better manage its existing resources including development partner funding, we cannot continue to ask for more money”.
The FSM Forum Compact Peer Review have consulted with the national government and the four state governments of Chuuk, Kosrae, Pohnpei and Yap discussing how the budgeting and planning processes are linked between the states and the national government.
At the end of the peer review, a report with recommendations for the FSM government and its development partners will be discussed and agreed on with the government before being finalised.
Selected by the FSM Government, the FSM Peer Review Team consists of Mr Catolino Kijiner from the Government of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Ms Noumea Simi representing the Government of Samoa, Mr Johnson Naviti of the Vanuatu Government and Mr Asif Chida from the UNDP Pacific Centre in Fiji. The Team is assisted by staff of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat.
For media enquiries, contact Mr Johnson Honimae, the Forum Secretariat’s Media Officer on phone 691 9248325 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Captions for photos:(left to right)
Yap state Governor, Hon. Sebastian Anefal (left) and his officials meet with the Forum Compact Peer Review Team
A traditional Yapese man’s house and traditional canoe building on Yap
(All photos by Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat)