Countries Seek Continuation Of ADB/SPREP Mainstreaming And Regional Technical Support Mechanism

Pacific island countries unanimously expressed a strong interest in the continuation of work progressed under technical assistance provided by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) in a meeting that ended in Apia yesterday.

The Implementation of the Strategic Program for Climate Resilience: Pacific Region Technical Assistance (TA), piloted the use of mainstreaming tools in FSM and Tuvalu so that climate change and disaster related risks could be incorporated into their development planning processes, policies and plans.

A regional facility (RTSM) was also set up under the TA to fund and send experts to respond to countries requests to address their priority needs. The 34 experts deployed under the regional facility and mainstreaming components proved to be crucial to scale up targeted national climate change investments.

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Participants at the SPREP Headquarters. Photo: SPREP

Vanuatu and FSM had received US$23 and 9 million respectively from the Adaptation Fund, Nauru received US$300,000 from the Green Climate Find (GCF). Tonga's proposal for US$50 million will be tabled at the next GCF Board Meeting . The RTSM also responded to calls from Samoa, Fiji and Tuvalu incorporate climate and disaster related risks into their national and sector plans and processes.

The beauty of the mainstreaming and RTSM work for countries was having a fully funded expert address an urgent (often timebound) need they had, where the burden of administration procurement, contract and financial management dealt was taken off their shoulders.

A concern raised in the meeting was the sustainability of the project products. The concern voiced was about the great value of the RTSM and the need for continued application and related training for the mainstreaming tools.

Countries that were beneficiaries of the RTSM and the rapid response fund and national PPCR track countries called for higher level communication specially in key regional meetings such as the Forum Leaders Meeting, SPREP Meeting, SPC CRGA for donors to promote the continuation of the RTSM -linked to the implementation of the Framework for Resilient Development in the Pacific (FRDP)

The Meeting was held on 16th and 17th of May, with participants attending from Federated States of Micronesia, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.
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