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Pacific Islands Forum Secretary General, Dame Meg Taylor has congratulated the Government of Cook Islands on becoming the first Forum Island Country, and the first Small Island Developing State (SIDS), to receive a readiness support grant from the Green Climate Fund (GCF).
The funding will help strengthen the capacity of their National Designated Authority to effectively engage with, and access funds from the GCF.
“Cook Islands, as the current Chair of the Forum Economic Ministers Meeting, has been very strong in advocating for direct access to international climate change finance and the utilisation of national systems. I wish to commend the Cook Islands Ministry of Finance and Economic Management and the Climate Change Department within the Office of the Prime Minister, for the dedication and hard work that has made this possible," said Dame Taylor.
“I would like to encourage other Forum Island Countries to draw on the experience of Cook Islands in pursuing efforts to access resources for readiness support and project funding under the GCF, in close collaboration with relevant regional agencies such as SPREP and SPC, and development partners”.
The Green Climate Fund’s Readiness Support Programme is designed to build the capacity of vulnerable developing countries to access climate change finance through the Fund. Over 100 countries are currently engaging with the GCF programme. The initial grant disbursed for the Cook Islands is US$75,000 with the total grant allocation being US$150,000. The money will be used to build the capacity of its National Designated Authority.
“Given our vulnerability to the adverse effects of climate change, we know that simplified and improved access to climate change finance is vital. The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat and members of the Council of Regional Organisations in the Pacific will continue to assist Forum Island Countries in strengthening their national systems and building readiness for improved access to climate change finance through initiatives like the Pacific Climate Change Finance Assessment Framework, and the Forum Compact reviews and south-south attachments,” Dame Taylor said.
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