During the high level dialogue, PM Puna will deliver remarks on climate and sustainable oceans – one of the eight focused themes selected for the meeting based on Pacific priorities and to drive momentum in the lead up to the UN Climate Action Summit in September this year.
All Pacific Forum members including the Cook Islands are greatly concerned by the impact of climate change on oceans – particularly coral reefs, coastal fisheries, and the productivity and distribution of highly migratory tuna stocks. On this theme, Forum members will reaffirm collective commitment to strengthening the management, use and conservation of the Pacific Ocean, with the ocean central to Pacific identity, culture, geography and development.
In pursuing sustainable development while ensuring environmentally sustainable ocean management, Cook Islands is well placed to deliver these points as manifested in initiatives like Te Marae Moana Policy, fisheries development and deep sea minerals development.
While in Suva, the prime minister will have opportunity to highlight where our national priorities currently stand and the support required to deliver concrete results that address the impacts of climate change that in turn support the achievement of our sustainable development goals during a bilateral meeting with SG Guterres.
Puna will be supported in the engagement by senior officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Immigration and the Office of the Prime Minister.
Meanwhile Puna was in New Zealand last week to attend the two-day Just Transition Summit.
The energy conference held at the TSB Stadium in New Plymouth, Taranaki provided an opportunity to help shape New Zealand’s pathway to a low emissions economy.
Puna was joined by deputy prime minister Mark Brown, who was returning from Fiji after attending the Asian Development Bank annual meeting and the Pacific Islands Forum Economic Ministers meeting.
During the Just Transition Summit, the Cook Islands delegation joined discussions on how a low-emissions economy maximises the opportunities for and minimises the impacts on communities.