Pacific Island Leaders Meeting In Japan Set For Next May

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PALM7 to address issues such as climate change, ocean conservation

NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (Matangi Tonga, Oct. 7, 2014) – Pacific Island leaders met the Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe in New York last month in preparation for the Pacific Island Leaders Meeting (PALM7) to be held in May 2015 in Iwaki, Japan.

The meeting held alongside the 69th Session of the United Nations General Assembly on September 25, attended by Tonga’s Prime Minister Lord Tu’ivakano, reaffirmed the commitment between Japan and the Pacific on development cooperation and strengthened partnerships.

The Japanese PM said Pacific Island countries have established a strong relationship with Japan in a number of areas, including climate change and disaster risk reduction.

HE Tommy E Remengesau Jr, the President of the Republic of Palau and Chair of the Pacific Islands Forum urged Japan to work closely with Pacific countries to enhance efforts to action the Majuro Declaration for Climate Leadership, the Palau Declaration on Oceans and the Samoa Pathway outcomes.

He further called on Japan’s support to ensure that the interests of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are not lost in the forthcoming negotiations of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Hon Henry Puna, the Cook Islands Prime Minister emphasized the importance of the PALM process and the need for a comprehensive PALM7 meeting agenda.

Important issues to the Pacific were raised by the leaders to likely feature during PALM7 included but not limited to: climate change, disaster risk reduction, ocean conservation and people to people exchanges.

PALM is a forum held every three-years since 1997 between the Government of Japan and leaders in the Pacific island region to faciliate and strengthen relations.

During the last PALM6 in 2012, leaders agreed on the need for a comprehensive response to climate change adaption in the Pacific and the importance of promoting sustainable development based on human security through the Millennium Development Goals.

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