Mr. Liu Zhenmin Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Remarks Samoa Partnership Dialogue; 29 October 2018, Apia, Samoa.


Reverend Salesulu,
Honourable Sili Epa Tuioti, Minister of Finance,
Distinguished Delegates,
Ladies and Gentlemen,


I am pleased to address you today at this inter-regional Samoa Partnership Dialogue.

I thank the Government and the people of Samoa for their hospitality in hosting this important meeting

I wish to thank the co-chairs of the Steering Committee on SIDS Partnership, Belize and Ireland, for their leadership.

And, I extend my appreciation to the UN Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States, for their advocacy role and active collaboration with UNDESA.

Excellencies and distinguished delegates,

Four years ago, the international community gathered here in Apia, at the Third international Conference on SIDS, to renew their political commitment to the sustainable developments of SIDS and to adopt the SAMOA Pathway.

In line with its theme “Sustainable developments of Small Island Developing States through genuine and durable partnerships”, the 2014 Samoa Conference also resulted in hundreds of new partnership formed by governments, regional organization, the private sector and civil society in support of SIDS.

The theme of the Samoa Conference could not have been timelier.

There is increasing recognition that partnerships have great potential to bring together human and financial resources, expertise, technology and knowledge from different actors and multiple impacts.

They can become powerful drives for change, innovation and wealth.

International cooperation and partnerships across different stakeholders are critical for achieving sustainable development in SIDS, given their unique vulnerabilities and special social, economic and environmental conditions

One of the groundbreaking outcomes of the 2014 Conference was the establishment of the innovative intergovernmental SIDS Partnership Framework.

Since 2015, this Partnership Framework has developed into an important multi-stakeholder platform for:

  • monitoring and reviewing progress of SIDS partnerships,
  • for launching new partnerships, and
  • for sharing good practices and lessons learned.


Excellencies and distinguished delegates,

In General Assembly resolution 72/217, Member States called on the UN Secretariat:

  • to continue to enhance the analytical and advocacy support for the work of the Steering Committee of the SIDS Partnership Framework, and
  • to ensure that the Global Multi-stakeholder SIDS Partnership Dialogue it convenes every year is action-oriented and results-focused.

In response, with generous funding support provided by the Government of Italy and under the overall guidance of the Steering Committee, my department has supported the preparatory process of the SAMOA Pathway mid-term review. We have organized a series of inclusive partnership dialogues with full participation by all stakeholders.

The overarching goal of these dialogues is to increase the capacity of all stakeholders to forge new multi-stakeholder partnerships. Such partnerships can help drive implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the SAMOA Pathway on the ground, and strengthen the monitoring and review of existing ones.

Today’s dialogue builds on the outcomes of three regional partnership dialogue that were held in Mauritius, Tonga and Belize earlier this year.

Several important action-oriented recommendations have emerged from the discussion.


  1. SIDS Partnership Norms and Criteria:


There is the need to better understand, and define, what makes partnerships truly durable and genuine.

I applaud the co-chairs of the Steering Committee, Belize and Ireland, for having taken the initiative to develop the “SIDS Partnership Criteria and Norms”, which are an important step in this regard.


  1. Strengthening the monitoring and review of partnership for SIDS:

On this, many good ideas and proposals have emerged. Based on consultations, a set of proposals will be presented later today for your feedback and collective consideration.


  1. An in-depth analysis of partnerships for SIDS:

To better understand the breadth, scope, and impact of SIDS partnerships, I am pleased to announce the launch of an in-depth analysis developed by DESA of the 300 partnerships that were announced at the 2014 SIDS Conference. It also includes the SIDS relevant partnerships announced during the 2017 Ocean Conference.

I thank all partners that contributed to this analysis, including the Pacific Island Forum Secretariat and the United Nations Development Programme.

The analysis looks at how these partnerships are addressing the priority areas of the SAMOA Pathway – including Sustainable Energy, Climate Change, Biodiversity, Ocean and Seas, Water and Sanitation, as well as others – and the impact they have on SIDS. It also identifies several gaps, challenges, lessons learned and best practices.

This analysis will be presented following this opening segment.


  1. SIDS Partnership Toolbox:

To support these recommendations, DESA is also developing a SIDS partnership Toolbox that will be available both in print and online.

It will include the in-depth analysis of SIDS partnerships, as well as learning materials and tools intended to assist all stakeholders to monitor and review SIDS partnerships more effectively.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Nest year’s high-level review of the SAMOA Pathway is an important opportunity for Member States to assess progress made in addressing the priorities of small islands, and to further strengthen international cooperation in support of SIDS.

Today’s event is an excellent opportunity to continue to strengthen the momentum needed for the successful implementation of the SAMOA Pathway.

The UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs will continue to strengthen its support for the monitoring and review of existing partnerships, and to promote the launch of new, genuine and durable partnerships for Small Island developing States.

I wish you all an inspiring dialogue.