Access to climate finance space discussed between Fiji and Cook Islands

Attorney-General and the Minister for Economy and Minister responsible for Climate Change, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum virtually held a bilateral meeting with the Prime Minister of Cook Islands, Mark Brown to discuss additional support that is to be provided in the Access to Climate Finance space ahead of the COP26 Summit. Picture: FIJI GOVT

The Attorney-General and the Minister for Economy and Minister responsible for Climate Change, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum virtually held a bilateral meeting with the Prime Minister of Cook Islands, Mark Brown to discuss additional support that is to be provided in the Access to Climate Finance space ahead of the COP26 Summit.

Under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and its Paris Agreement, the Prime Minister of Cook Islands, Mark Brown has been nominated as the Climate Finance Champion for Pacific Small Island Developing States (PSIDS).

Given Cook Islands’ non-participation at the COP26 in person, Fiji has offered to provide additional support during the lead up to COP26 and during the High-Level Events in terms of modalities for interaction on key issues.

During the meeting, Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum highlighted the need to drive for additional monetary reserves to meet rising adaptation, mitigation and loss and damage needs for the PSIDS.

The A-G outlined potential areas and activities that can be pursued during the negotiations with various states during COP26, which includes pursuing blue bonds, carbon trading markets and considering ‘vulnerability’ as a criterion for access to concessional financing.

Prime Minister of Cook Islands, Mark Brown in sharing similar sentiments, outlined the need for new and alternative financial instruments to be sourced as the PSIDS require it now more than

ever.

He highlighted that COVID-19 has considerably increased debt levels and it is time that the climate finance grants are increased.

At the end of the virtual meeting, both Fiji and the Cook Islands reaffirmed their support for positive outcomes at the COP26.

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