Posts tagged SBY

FIJI WARNS OF CATASTROPHE IN THE PACIFIC BECAUSE OF CLIMATE CHANGE

Region’s leading nation calls for renewed global effort to reduce carbon emissions

Fiji has appealed to developed nations not to behave selfishly over the catastrophic prospect facing Small Island Developing States because of climate change.

The Fijian Prime Minister, Voreqe Bainimarama called for a renewed global commitment to reduce carbon emissions at the second summit of the Pacific Islands Development Forum in Nadi, Fiji, which is being attended by the President of Indonesia, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, and a number of Pacific leaders.

The Fijian leader expressed the Pacific region’s “collective disappointment and dismay” at the failure of the international community to seriously address the issue of climate change.

“The collective will to adequately address the crisis is receding at a time when the very existence of some Pacific Island nations is threatened by rising sea levels,” Prime Minister Bainimarama said.

He said rising sea levels caused by global warming threaten to submerge the nations of Kiribati, Tuvalu and the Marshall Islands and are already swamping the coastal areas of many Pacific nations, including Fiji.

Prime Minister Bainimarama made specific reference to Australia, which he accused of backtracking on its previous commitments on carbon emissions.

“The election of the new government in Australia last September has seen a distinct change of rhetoric about cutting carbon emissions.”

The Prime Minister called on Australia and other nations not to put short-term interests ahead of their responsibility to the global community, particularly to those nations whose very existence is in question.

“History will judge you harshly if you abandon us to our apparent fate of sinking below the waves because you don’t want to make the necessary adjustment to your domestic policies,” he said.

The issue of climate change has taken centre stage at the Pacific Islands Development Forum.

The President of the Republic of Indonesia, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono – who delivered the keynote address – said that Indonesia has a strong commitment to broaden its network of cooperation with PIDF countries to mitigate the impact of climate change.

The President acknowledged the great challenge the world is facing from the impact of climate change.

“This is the reason why Indonesia has taken steps to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. By 2020, we aim to cut our emissions by 26 per cent using only our own resources, and up to 41 per cent with international support,” he said.

President Yudhoyono announced that over the next five years, Indonesia will also offer various capacity building programs to Pacific nations to deal with the crisis, plus a contribution of US$20 million.

The Fijian leader’s renewed call for action comes after the Fijian President and Head of State, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, announced in, February this year, that the people of Kiribati would be granted a home in Fiji if their country is submerged by the rising seas.

Kiribati has already purchased 6,000 acres of land on Fiji’s second biggest island, Vanua Levu, to ensure its food security as sea water encroaches on its arable land.

The Fijian president announced that some or all of the 100,000 citizens of Kiribati would be able to migrate to Fiji if the need arose.

“Fiji will not turn its back on our neighbours in their hour of need,” he said. “I want to assure you all that Fiji will stand shoulder to shoulder with you as you face this crisis, as well as in doing everything possible to try to avert it. In a worst case scenario and if all else fails, you will not be refugees.”

The PIDF Summit ends on Friday 20th June.

FIJI AND INDONESIA JOIN FORCES TO COMBAT DRUG TRAFFICKING

Fiji and Indonesia have agreed to join forces in the global war against drugs.

The governments of the two nations signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in Denarau today that deepens their cooperation in combatting the trafficking of illegal drugs and substances in the Pacific Region.

The Minister for Defense and National Security, Joketani Cokanasiga, who signed the agreement on behalf of the Fijian Government, said that the MOU greatly enhances Fiji’s ability to secure its borders against the flow of illegal drugs.

“The agreement allows Fiji to make a larger contribution to international investigations by sharing information with the Indonesian security forces,” the Minister said.

The agreement was signed after a bilateral meeting between the Fijian Prime Minister, Voreqe Bainimarama, and the Indonesian President, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who is in Fiji on a State Visit and to participate in the Second Summit of the Pacific Islands Development forum, which opens in Denarau tomorrow.

It was one of six MOUs signed by the two governments today in various fields to strengthen the cooperation between Fiji and Indonesia.

Agreements were signed on the topics of fisheries, small and medium enterprises, public works infrastructure, diplomatic training, youth and sports and visa exemption for diplomats.

During the bilateral meeting, Prime Minister Bainimarama took the opportunity to thank President Yudhoyono for Indonesia’s support of Fiji, including its agreement to co-lead the multinational group of observers for the 2014 General Election.

The Prime Minister said that President Yudhoyono is an inspiration to the people of Fiji for the way he has stood up to the forces of extremism in his country and has upheld the notion of ethnic and religious tolerance and harmony.

The Prime Minister updated the Indonesian president on preparations for the General Election and added that the Fijian Government regards the expansion of trading opportunities with Indonesia a major priority.

INDONESIAN PRESIDENT ARRIVES IN FIJI FOR 2014 PIDF SUMMIT

The President of the Republic of Indonesia, His Excellency Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, arrived in Fiji this evening to participate in the Second Summit of the Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF).

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, who met President Yudhoyono at Nadi Airport, said that it was a great honour to welcome the Indonesian Head of State to Fiji.

“President Yudhoyono’s visit marks a historic moment for Fiji and for the region. His presence here shows the importance of the PIDF – the Pacific’s grand coalition of regional governments, civil society organisations and the private sector,” PM Bainimarama said.

The Prime Minister said that Indonesia – a nation of more than 250 million people spread across nearly 13,500 islands – is one of the Pacific’s most important development partners, adding that there are many areas for closer cooperation and partnership.

The Indonesian Head of State was accorded a 100 men guard of honor by the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF) and the Fiji Naval Forces upon his arrival at Nadi Airport.

President Yudhoyono is leading a delegation to the 2014 PIDF meeting where he will deliver the keynote address. While in Fiji, he is also expected to hold talks with senior government officials including the President of Fiji, His Excellency Ratu Epeli Nailatikau.

The Second Summit will also include high-level participants from 12 Pacific island governments, as well as observers from nations such as Morocco, Venezuela, Israel, Singapore, Kazakhstan, Kuwait and Georgia.

The Vice President of the Federated States of Micronesia, Alik L Alik, and Kazakhstan Ambassador at Large, Barlybay Sadykov, have already arrived in the country.

The Prime Minister of Tonga, Lord Sialeʻataongo Tuʻivakano, arrived this evening and the President for Nauru, Baron Divavesi Waqa and senior officials from French Polynesia and Solomon Islands are expected to arrive into the country tomorrow.

Since its inception in 2013, the PIDF has been a unique platform that brings together leaders from the public and private sectors and civil society to address regional development challenges.

The PIDF Summit officially opens on Thursday 19th June.