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Rédigé à 09:00 | Lien permanent
On the picture H.E. Moses Mosé Ambassador of Solomon Islands,
Permanent Representative Peter Javorčík from Slovakia to the EU
and Director for Migration and Mobility, Belinda Pyke.
Friday, 7 October 2016, Brussels: On behalf of the Solomon Islands, HE Ambassador Moses Kouni Mosé, signed an agreement for a short-stay visa waiver programme with the Permanent Representative of Slovakia to the EU, HE Ambassador Peter Javorčík (rotating presidency of the European Council) and the Director for Migration and Mobility, Belinda Pyke at the Directorate General for Migration and Home Affairs.
The visa waiver regime provides for visa-free travel for EU citizens when travelling to the territory of the Solomon Islands, and reciprocally for Solomon Islanders when travelling to the EU for a period of stay of 90 days in any 180-day period.
Solomon Islands thus joins the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of Marshall Islands, Vanuatu, the Independent State of Samoa, the Kingdom of Tonga, the Republic of Palau, the Republic of Kiribati and Tuvalu for the visa-free travel to the EU.
The Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom are not be subject to the application of the agreement, in accordance with the protocols annexed to the EU treaties. Therefore the visa regime to these member states remains subject to their national legislation.
Rédigé à 16:35 | Lien permanent
PRIME Minister Hon Manasseh Sogavare has hailed the signing of the Motalava Maritime Border Treaty as a deal achieved and sealed in the true spirit of Melanesia.
When presenting his remarks during the signing ceremony on Friday 7th October, Prime Minister Sogavare acknowledged the ‘deep respect for sovereign rights’ upheld during the long peaceful process of negotiating the eventual border demarcations.
Hon Sogavare said the Treaty expresses ‘our desire to uphold and respect our unique Melanesian traditions, customs and cultures in a globalising world’.
“The Maritime Border Treaty will protect the indigenous right of our people, and to remain united, to fight for the indigenous rights of other Melanesian brothers who are suppressed and deprived of that right.”
“I believe the Treaty we have signed today shows our unity to stand and fight for the rights of Melanesians and the expression of the desire of the two nations to respect each other as sovereign states of Melanesia.”
“It is also the expression of the desire for the two nations to stand together and fight for the common good of Melanesia, from West Papua to Fiji,” Prime Minister Sogavare said.
“From now on, we have the solemn duty to respect the spirit in which the Treaty is signed, with responsibilities under international laws, with respect for one another and traditional knowledge of Melanesia.”
Prime Minister Sogavare said the Treaty enables the two nations to continue to build and grow their relations to from strength to strength.
He thanked his Vanuatu counterpart, Hon Charlot Salwai for his vision in committing to the signing of the Maritime border Treaty, ending 33 years of peaceful negotiations.
Rédigé à 09:32 | Lien permanent
Prime Minister Sogavare in his face-to-face dialogue
French Polynesian President, His Excellency Fritch
French Polynesia (Tahiti) has offered to help Solomon Islands develop its tourism industry.
It also proposes potential areas for wider Pacific regional cooperation in airline services and restrictive fishing limits.
A government statement confirms these agendas were discussed in a meeting between Prime Minister Hon Manasseh Sogavare and the French Polynesian President, His Excellency Edouard Fritch in Honolulu, Hawaii, last Friday.
On the tourism help proposal, President Fritch said French Polynesia is willing to share its tourism expertise and experiences with Solomon Islands to help improve its tourism industry.
On that note, the French territory offers to host the Solomon Islands Minister for Tourism in Tahiti on a look and learn trip and also send its tourism experts to Solomon Islands.
Mr. Fritch also touched on the proposition for regional airline services, saying the establishment of a regional airline is an excellent idea that could promote multi-destination tourism.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Sogavare in his response welcomes the help offered by the French President to Solomon Islands tourism industry and the proposition for a Pacific regional cooperation to advance common Pacific interests.
The Prime Minister says the proposal is crucial as the strength of the Pacific Island nations lie in working together and speaking with one voice on issues of their collective interest and concern.
Mr. Sogavare says among others, regional airlines proposition is a great idea that could be operated by way of a codeshare agreement amongst the different Pacific nations.
The Prime Minister points Solomon Islands has been considering the idea of entering into codeshare arrangements with some Asian airlines to provide services to and from Solomon Islands to certain Asian destinations to tap into the huge Asian Tourist market.
Rédigé à 11:26 | Lien permanent
Nous partons dans l’Océan Pacifique.
C’est là que sont pêchés la plupart des thons aujourd’hui consommés dans le monde.
Un marché de plusieurs milliards de dollars. Une ressource qui semble infinie tant les poissons sont nombreux et faciles à pêcher. Mais l’espèce est menacée et la guerre contre la surpêche a commencé.
Rédigé à 09:43 | Lien permanent
Les cinq policiers sélectionnés pour la mission avec le Commandant
des forces de police des îles Salomon (3e à gauche)
Pour la première fois dans l'histoire, les Îles Salomon vont contribuer aux efforts de l'Organisation des Nations Unies pour le maintien de la paix. Ils sont partis ce weekend pour une mission d'un an au Darfour, dans l'ouest du Soudan.
Le Darfour est actuellement l'épicentre d'hostilités entre le gouvernement soudanais et les rebelles du Mouvement de libération du peuple soudanais. Les pourparlers de paix n'aboutissent pas et la région vit une véritable crise humanitaire.
L'ONU y envoie donc ses casques bleus, notamment pour faciliter le travail des ONG et des associations. Il y a trois ans, l'ONU a demandé aux Îles Salomon d'envisager l'envoi du personnel de police qualifié sur les missions des Nations Unies dans le monde. 137 officiers salomonais ont exprimé le souhait d'y participer. Un groupe présélectionné a été soumis à des tests médicaux, et diverses formations, notamment dans le maniement des armes à feu et autres techniques de maintiens de la paix.
Cinq policiers seulement ont été sélectionnés. Il rejoindront dans cette mission des volontaires d'autres pays insulaires du Pacifique, notamment des Samoa et des Fidji.
Rédigé à 09:54 | Lien permanent
SUVA, REPUBLIC OF FIJI, 03 AUG 2016
The Green Climate Fund (GCF) this week welcomed over 170 representatives from Pacific Islands countries, Accredited Entities to the GCF, development partners, civil society and the private sector to the Pacific Regional Meeting. The meeting was co-hosted by Australia and the GCF.
Co-Chair of the GCF Board, Ewen McDonald, opened the high-level segment in the presence of Pacific Leaders and Ministers by stating, ‘The Pacific Islands are already experiencing the impacts of climate change, and are making efforts towards reducing emissions and climate-resilient development. The Green Climate Fund exists to support that transformation and this workshop will help Pacific Island countries access this finance’.
Co-Chair Zaheer Fakir added, ‘This workshop is a key part of the Fund’s efforts to work with countries and accredited entities to attract high quality, ambitious and paradigm-shifting funding proposals. The Board has already approved over USD400 million in funding approvals, and we aim to reach USD2.5 billion in approvals by our final Board meeting for 2016 in Apia, Samoa in December.’
Ministers and regional partners recognised the good progress the Pacific region has made in securing over US$68 million in GCF funding to date. Participants shared experiences in accessing GCF funding and identified key areas that could improve the region’s access to the GCF, including strengthening country capacity, improving coordination and developing strong partnerships.
The event has contributed to building a pipeline of Pacific proposals for the GCF, with a range of potential proposal ideas across themes such as water, energy, strengthening resilience, and transport.
At the technical workshop over the last two days of the meeting, Pacific Island countries worked with Accredited Entities and other partners to further develop key ideas into proposals so they can be ready for GCF Board consideration later this year, and beyond. This included practical discussions on potential regional programmes including in renewable energy, energy efficiency, insurance, and oceans.
Participants developed a Pacific GCF roadmap that identified a range of potential country and regional level proposals to be prepared for GCF consideration. The roadmap, coupled with strong partnerships and networks formed during the Pacific Regional Meeting, will help maintain the momentum for the Pacific towards realising its ambition and maximising benefits for the region with the GCF.
Rédigé à 18:05 | Lien permanent
Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare and Singapore’s Senior Minister of State, Josephine Teo met in Singapore reaffirming their government’s commitment to the ties that exist between Solomon Islands and Singapore.
The two leaders appreciated the opportunity of the face-to-face dialogue to reaffirm their commitment to the friendly ties that exist between the two countries.
A statement by the Prime Minister Press Secretary says Prime Minister Sogavare and Senior States Minister Teo dialogued on Singapore’s Cooperation Programme (SCP) established in 1992 to serve as the primary platform through which Singapore offers technical assistance to other developing countries including Solomon Islands.
Technical assistance provided under the SPC involves training courses or study visits conducted in Singapore in the areas of agriculture, childcare education, communications and transport, economic development, law and public utilities and other sectors.
Sogavare said Solomon Islands has benefited from the SCP since its introduction.
The Prime Minister thanked the Singaporean Government for the significant contribution it has made to the development of Solomon Islands through this programme.
Meanwhile, the Singaporean Senior Minister of State said the SCP is one way Singapore can make a meaningful contribution to its relations with Solomon Islands.
Minister Teo told Prime Minister Sogavare, Solomon Islands officials mainly attended technical training programmes provided under the auspices of SCP in the areas of finance and economic development.
She said training opportunities can be extended to other areas requested by the Solomon Islands Government.
Rédigé à 11:15 | Lien permanent
It has been a global and endless debated issue, yet governments come to no conclusion. Sea level rise as it is known; due to Climate Change impact is now invading our beautiful Islands and homes.
This is an irresistible issue around the globe and the big guys have no choice but to find solutions. The real life issue wedged much on human race and the environment around us.
It has been a worry and governments have been trying to make recommendations to adapt to its (climate change) impact.
We can’t stop climate change impact, however, we have to shift ourselves to adapt to it.
Climate change, perhaps the greatest threat to the Pacific Ocean's health, jeopardizes all aspects of the Pacific Ocean and its communities' sustainability.
Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare said at the recent Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF) in Honiara that the issue of the adverse effects of climate change needs political will and concerted leadership.
Pacific islands leaders were retold that the issue of resettlement of our Pacific Islands people as a result of sea level rise is critically important to our region.
“This issue cannot be dealt with solely at programmatic level within the many regional bodies that are present with us today; neither can it be reworked by our respective national agencies.
“The PIDF is uniquely placed to offer this space political commitment and concerted leadership.
“The link between political commitment, concerted leadership, technical knowledge and innovative solution is present within the PIDF.
“This mix can be blended and brought together to deal with this pressing issue of climate change,” he said.
Sogavare revealed that there has been some genuine progress on the issues of climate change through the support by development partners like UNESCAP and the EU.
“I have observed that our development partners, which some of them are attending the PIDF, in particular UNESCAP and the EU have made genuine progress on this issue of climate change and the PIDF, under my Chairmanship will ride on the bandwagon of their partnership in this strategic approach.”
It’s good to hear Sogavare mentioned that there is genuine progress on the issue of climate change which crushed wildly on Pacific Islands small states.
This issue of climate change which resulted in sea level rise is a must-dealt-with stuff to ensure our vulnerable pacific Islands communities are not swallowed.
Increasing sea surface temperature, sea level rise, and ocean acidification all result from increased CO2levels.
Pacific countries have already identified strong effects of ocean warming, changes in ocean circulation, and abrupt shifts in precipitation patterns.
The bleaching and subsequent deaths of reef-building corals caused by warm water pulses have destroyed reef ecosystems.
Shifts in ocean and atmospheric currents have created massive dead zones or changed migration patterns of whales and seabirds.
In addition, decreasing pH levels due to CO2acidosis are shifting the ecological balance of marine plankton and bottom dwelling species that form calcium skeletons.
Some ocean areas have already acidified to levels known in laboratory studies to cause harm to ocean life.
The rates of current environmental change caused by climate change far outpace anything seen in human history—and will likely accelerate in the near future.
Sea level rise as caused by Climate change cause great destructions to the environment and impact on humankind.
It has broken down sea walls, flooded villages, inundated food-producing land and contaminated freshwater wells.
Houses have collapsed with coastline erosion, tree cover has declined, increasing human and plant vulnerability to the intense tropical sun and, day by day, people’s energy is consumed more by basic survival.
According to research it stated that the impact of climate change was first noticed on Ontong Java in the 1990s for the Solomon Islands.
“Satellite data shows the sea near the Solomon Islands has risen annually by 8mm over the past 20 years, compared to the global annual average of 3mm.
“Ontong Java in Malaita Province possesses a total land area of 12 square kilometres, is an average two metres above sea level, with a population of about 3000.
Since 2010, the Anglican Church of Melanesia has worked on improving food security for its Polynesian communities.
“The main problem is saltwater intrusion into the soil,” George Bogese, ACOM’s mission aid and program officer, explained in the capital Honiara.
“The fear of the people of Ontong Java is they will eventually lose the islands that have sustained them for thousands of years.
“For the Solomon Islands government, climate change is the most critical development issue facing the nation, and it is now bracing for the impact of climate-induced migration.
“Who will make the final decision on migrants’ fate? In a nation where 87% of land is under customary care, not state ownership, can enough land be secured for new settlements?
“In a least developed country, where will the money and capacity come from to relocate an entire island’s population? It is worrying.
“The Solomon Islands government aims to have its first climate change relocation policy completed by the end of the year, but there will be formidable challenges in implementation,” according to Crikey report.
Island communities in the Pacific Ocean are facing unprecedented challenges to their economies and environment from the impacts of climate change, according to a new report released at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Doha, Qatar.
“Sea level rise, tropical cyclones, floods and drought, combined with pressures from unsustainable fishing practices and coastal development, and consumption and production trends, are rendering the livelihoods of some 10 million people increasingly vulnerable.
“Low-lying islands in particular could face projected losses of up to 18 per cent of GDP due to climate change.
“The report recommends actions to enforce legislation, improve the availability of environmental data, and strengthen environmental institutions to help meet the major climate change challenges facing the Pacific region.
“The study highlights successful efforts to create community-managed conservation areas, such as marine parks, which have used indigenous knowledge to improve recycling, energy efficiency and sustainable water use. Such techniques can be scaled up, and serve as a model for other regions, said the report.
Addressing the press at the conclusion of the summit late Wednesday, Mr Sogavare who has assumed the PIDF Chairmanship for a two-year period said, “ It was a very successful summit. Everything went very well as planned with a number of very important resolutions reached.”
He said the summit started off with pre-summit discussions on various topics of interest to PIDF Member States and concluded with the handing over of the chairmanship from Prime Minister Hon Bainimarama of Fiji to him as well as discussions on the report of the PIDF Secretary-General Mr Martel Francois.
The pre-summit discussions covered the Paris Agreement, which emanated from the United Nations Summit on Climate Change in Paris (COP21), roadmap to COP22 in Marrakesh, Morocco, Harnessing and Guaranteeing Ocean Wealth, Enhancing Collaboration in Achieving the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and Opportunities for Accessing Climate Change Adaptation Financing.
The PIDF chairmanship handover to the Solomon Islands Prime Minister from his Fiji counterpart- the first time for another PIDF Member State apart from Fiji to take on this role- will see the incumbent serve for a two-year term.
The report by the PIDF Secretary-General covered PIDF’s Budget and Work Programme for 2017, Regional Development Trust Fund, Roadmap for Climate Change, Proposal for a Pacific Climate Treaty, Resolution for the Observance of the Pacific Year of Ocean 2017, PIDF Blue Economy Conference in 2017, PIDF role in UN Conference on Oceans and Seas, PIDF Contribution to the Climate Induced Migration Summit and the IMO- European Union Project on Capacity Building for Climate Change Mitigation in the Maritime Shipping Sector.
“As you know the Pacific Islands Development forum is made up of small developing island states and is a very inclusive organization and therefore the summit was very much focused on getting our collective voice on global issues affecting us.
“We acknowledge that because of our smallness, we can only make an influence decisions on issues that are global if we have a collective stand and I think we have improved on that. The outcome of the Paris Agreement for example- the number of positions that were put forward by our small island developing states leading on from the climate change heavily focused Suva Declaration (this declaration emanated from the third PIDF Leaders’ Summit held in Suva, Fiji in 2015).
“A number of issues that were raised by leaders at that forum are reflected in the Paris Agreement. What is left now is the implementation of that agreement which we leaders see as a huge challenge but once again there is that collective approach because of our smallness.
“The achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for example, while we appreciate that the prime responsibility to ensure these goals are achieved rests with member countries to streamline our various targets and goals to develop economical strategies and the need for a collective voice on decisions on very important issues affecting us underpins the importance of the PIDF.”
The resolutions reached at the 4th summit will be developed into a declaration called the Honiara Declaration, which will be released in due course.
The Secretary-General Mr Francois in turn thanked the Solomon Islands Government for hosting the summit, adding that it was quite special as it was the first to be held outside of Fiji since the inception of PIDF in 2013 and enforcement of the PIDF Charter during the third Leaders’ Summit in Suva, Fiji, 10-months ago.
He said the decision to start hosting the annual summit outside of Fiji shows the spirit of inclusivity the PIDF wants to instill in its members.
“We owe the gratitude for Solomon Islands to take on that challenging role. Prime Minister Sogavare has taken upon himself quite a challenge because we are talking about two years of chairmanship, which means two Leaders’ Summits, four Members of the Representative Council Meetings and hopefully the 2017 Blue Economy Summit,” Mr Francois added.
The PIDF Secretary-General said the PIDF Leaders at this year’s summit focused not only on the PIDF organizational structure but also discussions reflecting on the oceans and the key issues that will happen in 2016 and 2017.
He said the summit also focused on the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and the roadmap of the PIDF to the upcoming UN Climate Change Summit (COP22) in Marrakesh, Morocco.
“You know we were all excited that the Paris Agreement was signed though it has not been fully ratified yet. But there is a lot of excitement about what could be done but there are also a lot of difficulties in ensuring that we are not trying to rewrite the Paris Agreement.
“COP22 is not about refining the Paris Agreement. It’s rather about putting in place modalities for its implementation and the Pacific still has a very key role to play in ensuring that we continue the leadership role that we took in Paris, France and that is evident by the work that leaders did in the shaping of the Suva Declaration.”