09 March 2016

Micronesia Chief Executive Summits, Leaders sign joint communiqué

Chief Executives’ of the Micronesia signed Wednesday the joint communiqué which is a result of regional programmes of action in the areas of climate change, invasive species, regional, tourism, regional health and renaming the Micronesia Chief Executive Summits (MCES) as the Micronesian Islands’ Forum (MIF).
The communiqué committed the governments of Guam, Palau, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), and Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI), CNMI, Yap, Kosrae, Chuuk and Pohnpei to cooperation on several issues.
The Chief Executives “ discussed the issue of the structure of the MCES and the need to institutionalise the MCES beyond a ‘summit’ basis to strengthen the voice of Micronesia and to improve its response to regional issues on an on-going basis.  In line with this focus, the Chief Executives agreed to rename the MCES to MIF.
Remengesau said that the MIF would unify the functions and activities of the MCES and Micronesian Presidents’ Summit.
The leaders also endorsed the plan of locating the MIF Secretariat in Palau and announced that the Taiwan government is providing a US$400,000 grant for   the Micronesia Center for Sustainable Future. (MCSF)   

The Chief Executives also agreed in principle to an annual contribution of US$10,000 by each of the current MCES jurisdictions to the MCSF for two years to help support the Center.   The first contribution will be due by October, 2016.  Contributions will increase to US$15,000 in year three.    
Next year’s MIF will be hosted by Guam. Guam Governor Calvo said he is excited to host the next meeting and is hopeful that progress has been made from plans and agreements that they have agreed on during this Palau summit.
The leaders also recognized and expressed their support for a number of regional events scheduled to take place in the coming year, including the Festival of Pacific Arts in Guam, the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), the Pacific Media Summit in Palau, the Micronesian Games in Yap, and the 47th Pacific Islands Leaders’ Forum in Pohnpei.  The Presidents agreed to provide all available support for these events.  
The Chief also Executives signed a resolution expressing their strong support of the International Peace Bureau’s nomination of RMI’s former Foreign Minister Tony A. deBrum for the Nobel Peace Prize.
The Chief Executives also expressed their support for the immediate ratification by all countries of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.  The Presidents acknowledged the seriousness of the challenges posed by Climate Change, particularly in this El Niño year, which has already caused the FSM, the RMI and the State of Peleliu in Palau to declare states of emergency.  
Palau’s Congress this week ratified the Paris agreement. The agreement sets out a global action plan to put the world on track to avoid dangerous climate change by limiting global warming to well below 2°C.
The agreement is due to enter into force in 2020.
The agreement will enter into force after 55 countries that account for at least 55% of global emissions have deposited their instruments of ratification. Palau, is the second country in the world to ratify the agreement, the first one was Fiji.  
“It has been a productive three days, the leaders have banded together as one now called the Micronesian Islands’ Forum,” Remengesau said after the signing event.
“There is strength in numbers and unity,” Remengesau said.

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