Ministry of Finance key role to play in climate change agenda


By Pita Ligaiula in Port Vila

The critical role of the Ministry of Finance in the climate change agenda has been highlighted at the Forum Economic Officials Meeting (FEOM) this week.

Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat Climate Change Finance adviser, Exsley Taloiburi says it’s important to recognise that the Ministries of Finance and the Ministers of Finance, have a key role to play in the climate change agenda.

“Within our region, traditionally, climate change was previously something that was primarily the role and functions of Ministry of Environment and Ministries of climate change.

“We are promoting the fact that it should be a whole of government approach. It’s a development issue that affects all sectors, in countries across the region. And therefore, the role of, of central agencies like Ministries of Finance is really critical, because they are the ones that support and anchor the national development plans, the national budget planning processes. If we can, mainstream climate science efforts and action to the national development plans and budget planning processes, then we have a good chance of sustaining our efforts.

“We also have a good sense of upscaling efforts within our countries in the Pacific,” said Taloiburi.

Meanwhile, Pacific Trade & Investment Commissioner to Australia, Caleb Jarvis has emphasised the importance of meeting face to face at the Forum Economic Minister Meeting (FEMM) this week in Vanuatu.

“Look we have all survived very well in conducting these meetings virtually and that has been sufficient but there is nothing like the human face-to-face interaction.

“And so, for us as an organisation, it is great to come to a meeting like this and see the officials. Officials are very important as they often have continuity in the public sectors across the region and, of course, to meet Ministers who are incredibly influential.

“For us just to be present in person is highly valuable and to meet new and old colleagues. I am also here with my export team, and we are literally meeting all the existing exporters that we have been working with and all the different agencies as well.

So, it is a great opportunity for us to come and do our normal business, our core business and also participate and learn from the officials and the ministers at FEMM,” said Jarvis.