FSM commences climate change and disaster risk finance assessment

POHNPEI, FSM (Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat) — With a view to advancing their national climate change and disaster risk management priorities, 40 representatives from government departments, state governments, donor partners, private sector, and non-governmental organizations gathered in Pohnpei on Wednesday, Jan. 31, to participate in the introductory workshop for the Federated States of Micronesia’s climate change and disaster risk finance assessment.

In partnership with the government of the Federated States of Micronesia, a joint assessment team led by the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, alongside the Pacific Community, with funding from the USAID/SPC Institutional Strengthening in Pacific Islands Countries to Adapt to Climate Change Project, and the USAID Climate Ready Project, will be consulting with a broad range of stakeholders throughout the assessment period from Jan. 29 to Feb. 9, 2018.

Opening the introductory workshop, the secretary for the Department of Environment, Climate Change and Emergency Management, Andrew Yatilman, stressed the importance of ensuring that the climate change and disaster risk finance assessment report has utility for the FSM national government and the states — Pohnpei, Chuuk, Yap and Kosrae.

He encouraged participants to be open and to share information, with the team, so that the results of the assessment take account of the unique context of FSM.

“There are many sources of funding out there, but we do not need to access everything. We must be strategic and only pursue sources that are in line with our country priorities and commensurate with our absorptive capacity,” said Secretary Yatilman, who is the focal point for this assessment.

Marion Henry, secretary of the Department of Resources and Development, is of the view that “the assessment is critical to provide FSM options on how it could scale-up financing for big projects in sectors such as energy, water and food security.”

Sihna Lawrence, secretary of Finance and Administration and the GCF NDA added that this assessment will provide a mapping of the extent of readiness for potential GCF national implementing entities, in particular the FSM Development Bank and FSM Petrocorp.

FSM has already made significant progress in their commitment to prioritizing increased access to climate change and disaster risk financing, with the Micronesia Conservation Trust becoming an accredited regional implementing entity to the Green Climate Fund or GCF in 2017, and FSM being the first country in the Pacific to develop their GCF Country Program, with the support of GCF readiness funding.

The joint mission will build on work already in progress, by undertaking an assessment of the practical application of options for improved access to and management of, climate change and disaster risk finance, for the FSM. FSM is the ninth Pacific Island Country to undertake a national climate change and disaster risk finance assessment.