Source: Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat
Remarks at the UN Consultations on the UN Consultations on the UN Pacific Cooperation Framework 2023-2027
Delivered by the Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum, Henry Puna
23 May 2022
Mr Sanaka Samarasinha, UN Resident Coordinator
Representatives of the UN agencies in the Pacific region
My fellow CROP representatives
Ladies and gentlemen
Yadra vinaka to you all.
At the outset, allow me to acknowledge the very comprehensive context set by the UNRC for your discussions this morning.
May I also commend and recognise this valuable opportunity for a joint UN-CROP discussion ahead of the development of the UN’s Cooperation Framework for the Pacific for 2023 – 2027 – I hope that discussions such as this will only strengthen as we move forward, to ensure impact, alignment and the effective use of our limited development resources.
As you will be aware, the region has been working over the last 18-months to develop the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent. A member-driven and developed strategy, it sets out the opportunities for strengthened collective action for and by the Pacific region.
This strategy, together with its Implementation Plan to be developed in the coming months, will frame the issues that we as a region seek to deliver collectively.
However, I also note that this strategy is one that will not be delivered unilaterally by the region. Indeed, in order for us to fully realise the vision in this strategy, it will require strong and effective partnerships.
With that in mind, I will keep my remarks this morning very brief. Indeed, there are only two points that I would like to reaffirm with you this morning.
[Effective, efficient and impactful outcomes for our Pacific people]
Firstly, I want to touch on the importance of effective and efficient outcomes for our Pacific people.
All of us here today – each of the agencies we represent, are working towards or supporting an outcome that will result in the betterment of our Pacific people.
It is imperative, and indeed our responsibility, that we ensure that our work programmes not only align to the needs of our countries, but that they ensure the efficient and effective use of our limited resources.
If anything has become clearer over the past 24 months, it is that we are all dependent upon each other and the only way we can truly and effectively tackle development challenges is together. Collaboration is the only way forward.
I encourage you to engage in comprehensive and robust discussions that will identify opportunities for stronger collaboration and more effective delivery for our people.
I recognise that agencies already have in place work programmes that have been consulted with Members Countries in the region and identify interventions and gaps that need to be addressed.
However, platforms such as this conversation today, are opportunities for each of us to explore the strengths and programmes that may lie with other regional agencies and to see how best we can each complement each other – with our shared objective in mind.
[Dialogue and Partnership]
The second point I wanted to reaffirm this morning is the importance of dialogue and partnership.
We now operate in a global and multilateral environment that is under threat and must contend with a development financing landscape that has been further weakened, primarily because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
If we are to truly collaborate towards effective outcomes, we need to take the time to listen more carefully, work smartly and be more diligent about the use of resources.
I recognise that coherent and efficient delivery across multiple agencies is not an easy task, but I also believe that it is not impossible. At the heart of it is this – conversation and dialogue, and I am very pleased that both CROP agencies and UN agencies have this opportunity today to do just this.
With those brief words, I look forward to the outcome of your discussions today and hope that conversation like this will become an ongoing strategic opportunity for engagement between CROP and the UN agencies.
I thank you.