Monday, May 14, 2012

SIDS Ministers Discuss Position for Rio+20


11 May 2012: An informal ministerial meeting took place to address small island developing States’ (SIDS) position for the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD, or Rio+20), on 9 May 2012, in Bridgetown, Barbados. Representatives of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) stressed a focus on “the day after Rio." Other delegates addressed issues relating to utilization of ocean resources; gender aspects of resource access; principles of rotation between Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Mediterranean, and South China Sea (AIMS), Pacific and Caribbean; and strengthening of governance structures.

Heads of government and ministers from 29 states participated in the proceedings, which were hosted by the Government of Barbados and the UN Development Programme (UNDP). The meeting immediately followed the High-Level Conference of SIDS, "Achieving Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL)."

The meeting was chaired by Denis Lowe, Minister of Environment and Drainage, Barbados. It included: an update on progress in negotiations from UNCSD Executive Coordinator Elizabeth Thompson, who also identified elements for a successful transition to a global green economy; a presentation by Appio Claudio Acquarone, Ambassador of Brazil to Barbados, on Brazil’s views on the Rio outcome, noting it should incorporate, inter alia: poverty eradication and a clear framework for multilateral institutions on sustainable development; closed, high-level meetings to address SIDS' priorities for Rio+20 and level of ambition for the proposed Third Global Conference on Sustainable Development of SIDS in 2014; and a plenary discussion on expectations for Rio+20.

Statements were made by: Aloysius Amwano, Special Envoy of the President of Nauru and Chair of AOSIS; Peter Thomson, Permanent Representative of Fiji to the UN, regarding the “blue economy”; Ronald Jumeau, Permanent Representative of the Seychelles to the UN, speaking on behalf of AIMS; and Garfield Barnwell, Caribbean Community (CARICOM), speaking on behalf of the Caribbean region. [IISD RS Meeting Coverage]