Welcoming Speech by the Chief Executive Officer of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF), Tilafono David Hunter
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen!
A warm Welcome to you all
On behalf of the Technical Centre for Agriculture and Rural Cooperation (CTA) and the Women in Business Development Inc. (WIBDI), it is with great pleasure and privilege that I welcome you all to this national workshop on Identifying Climate Finance Mechanisms and Climate Smart Agriculture Strategies for a resilient Agriculture in Samoa.
For those of you who may not know, CTA is a joint institution operating under the framework of the Cotonou Agreement between the ACP Group of States (Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific) and the EU Members States (European Union). CTA has been working for many years in the Pacific region and in Samoa specifically.
One of the latest projects are on ICTs and Agritourism program in the Pacific, which include technical training, consumer education, rural business development and initiatives to increase employment in the agriculture sector.
More recently, CTA commissioned studies to review Nationally Determined Contributions (or NDCs) and related policy documents in 13 selected countries of the ACP, which involves identifying the level of implementation of NDCs, assessing the profile of agriculture and the engagement of agricultural stakeholders in the implementation of the NDCs, and identifying emerging opportunities and specific appropriate climate financing models for agriculture in the selected countries. Fortunately and thank you CTA, Samoa has been selected as one of the countries for these studies and you will have, later this morning a presentation of the findings of that report.
Our workshop’s topic of Climate Finance Mechanisms for Samoa Agriculture is of key importance and align with our sector strategies.
Climate change has become a defining and most challenging sustainable development issue of the 21st century, especially for small island development states like Samoa – one of the least GHG emitters and polluters but one of the most affected, physically, economically and socially – although we are not as worse as our low lying atoll SIDs such as Tuvalu and Kiribati.
Climate vulnerability underpins Samoa’s development of the agriculture sector and jeopardizes the food security of our people. More than 40 percent of Samoa’s population have direct livelihood from agriculture related activities. Hence, the urgent need to identify climate smart agriculture strategies and funding mechanisms that can contribute to the resilience of Samoa against climate change.
Allow me again to thank CTA for organizing such a timely national workshop to present the findings of their report, and discuss with you, the experts, on the best mechanisms to support a resilient Samoa agriculture.
This two-day national workshop has been organized in such a manner to stimulate knowledge, information and experience sharing exchanges among the participants through panels of discussion and small groups’ exercises. Very rarely we organize workshops where one can learn from other institutions and be able to collectively design robust strategies from climate smart agricultural practices to investments. I truly hope you will actively participate in these sessions and share your experiences and insights.
I look forward to hear the summary outcomes from our workshop tomorrow afternoon, to determine how we can collaborate via public-private partnership arrangements, to access climate funding in order to realise our aspirations and prayers for a resilient Samoa agriculture.
Say something about CTAs future Post – February 2020!
Thank You for your attention and God Bless