Pacific Islands Forum

Forum chair welcomes US re-entry to Paris Agreement

With hours of his taking the oath as the 46th US President, Joe Biden issued an executive order for the US to return to the Paris Agreement.

Forum Chair Kausea Natano, who is Tuvalu's prime minister, said that the US order was a priority was warmly appreciated in the Pacific

Natano said he looked forward to continued and strengthened relationships between the people of the Pacific and the US, especially on the climate crisis facing the 'Blue Pacific'.

Pacific Forum Chair proposes new approach over election of SG

Natano is also calling on countries with candidates to work together to resolve the row over the top job at the Forum Secretariat.

The Tuvalu Prime Minister said there are options available to help members address the issue.

Papua New Guinea's Dame Meg Taylor ends her six-year tenure at the helm of the Secretariat in January.

The leaders meet next month to decide Dame Meg's successor.

PIF Chair reaffirms support for open, constructive dialogues, Human Rights Mission to West Papua (Papua)

In line with the Forum Leaders decisions in Tuvalu in 2019, the Forum Chair has this week written to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Her Excellency Michelle Bachelet, requesting an update on the consultations with the Government of Indonesia concerning the invitation for a mission to West Papua (Papua).

Australia works with PIF to combat COVID-19 in the Pacific

This vital Forum initiative ensures the passage of humanitarian and medical supplies within the Pacific as we work together to mitigate the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Simon Kofe, Chair of the Pacific Islands Forum Foreign Ministers, welcomed the initiative and said: “Australia’s support will ensure that the Pacific Humanitarian Pathway will be able to deliver much needed humanitarian and medical supplies in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Through its actions, Australia is working to achieve values of familial ties and care for neighbour’s key throughout the Pacific.”

PIF Forum Foreign Ministers to consider regional response to COVID-19 Pandemic

In a letter to all Forum Leaders on 30 March, the Prime Minister of Samoa, Tuila’epa Sailele Malielegaoi, recognised that “we find ourselves in extraordinary times and circumstances where the very mettle of our nations and governments are tested beyond any limits that we have known in our lifetime”

Senior Officials of the Pacific Islands Forum have met to discuss and elaborate a possible regional response mechanism that would ease the coordination of supplies and assistance to the member states.

Vanuatu begins preparations towards hosting of Pacific Islands Forum

It will be the second time Vanuatu has hosted the Forum, with the previous occasion being in 2010.

This year’s hosting of the region’s premiere event from the 4th to 7th of August is particularly significant given it coincides with Vanuatu’s celebration of 40 years of independence.

In 1980, as the country prepared to declare political independence from Great Britain and France, it was at the behest of a budding regional institution – then known as the South Pacific Forum.

PIF urges China to 'take lead' in reducing carbon emissions

Dame Meg Taylor was speaking at a Pacific Island development forum hosted by China in Samoa this week.

Countries needed to be more ambitious than meeting Paris Agreement targets, she said, and China could be an "important ally" by taking the lead in "escalating its ambition level and its commitments" under the Paris Agreement.

"To just meet our Paris targets is no longer enough," she said at the third China-Pacific Island Countries Economic Development and Cooperation Forum.

Vanuatu to host next Pacific Island Forum

 At last week's summit in Tuvalu it was announced that Vanuatu would host in 2020, Fiji in 2021 and Kiribati in 2022.

Outgoing Forum chair wants Pacific speaking with one voice

Samoa takes over the chairmanship of the Forum at the 48th Forum summit in Apia early next month.

But Mr Christian will still be an integral part of the organisation, becoming one of the Forum Troika Leaders, made up of past, present and incoming Forum chairs.

At a recent meeting with the Forum secretary general, Dame Meg Taylor, Mr Christian spoke of the socio-economic and related development issues facing the region.

A critical matter for him is air transport, which has long been seen as a barrier to island nations' attempts to strengthen their economies.

Forging Forum foreign policy difficult - academic

To counter new risks facing the Pacific, the ministers discussed seeking a new collective approach to security in the region.

Anna Powles of the Massey Centre for Defence and Security Studies said common ground might be found on climate change, but this would be more difficult in matters like the Papua issue on which the Forum was divided.

Dr Powles also said new ways needed to be found to deal with transnational crime, but she said this also raised questions.