AIMS SIDS Discuss Regional Implementation of MSI

18 March 2010: The small island developing States (SIDS) of the AIMS (Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Mediterranean and South China Sea) region met in Male, Maldives, from 9-10 March 2010, to review progress achieved in the implementation of the Mauritius Strategy for the Further Implementation of the Barbados Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of SIDS (MSI). Participants expressed their desire to develop a regional position within the UNFCCC negotiations, among other areas for further attention.  

The outcome of this regional review meeting will contribute the AIMS national and regional perspectives to two events during the 18th session of the UN Commission for Sustainable Development (CSD 18) in May 2010, which is serving as a preparatory committee meeting for the MSI+5 high-level review meeting in September 2010. The meeting was organized by the SIDS Unit of the UN Division for Sustainable Development (DSD), in collaboration with the Government of the Maldives, the Indian Ocean Commission and the UN Development Programme (UNDP).

In regard to the issue of climate change, participants indicated they will pursue a more prominent role in the climate change negotiations and increase synergies with the Group of 77 and China. They stressed that the UNFCCC is the sole forum for climate change negotiations. They also indicated they will develop a regional AIMS position on the climate change negotiations to complement the general Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) position.

Furthermore, participants noted that, despite the fact that countries have developed or are developing national adaptation plans, funding to implement adaptation measures remains a challenge and needs to be mainstreamed in global and regional programmes. In this context, they suggested that an AIMS regional implementation programme on “Adaptation to Climate Change” could be developed.

Representatives at the meeting suggested that work be undertaken to develop country vulnerability-resilience profiles, building on earlier work carried out on various vulnerability indices for small island States. The goal of such an effort would be to help channel future development assistance in response to clearly documented sources of vulnerabilities and to areas where the coping capacity of SIDS could be strengthened.

Participants also highlighted the need to establish regional support mechanisms for intra-regional cooperation among the AIMS-SIDS, including regional centres of excellence for research, training, advisory services and strategic planning and advocacy at the international and regional levels. In doing so, they noted the importance of building on existing mechanisms such as the Nairobi and Abidjan Conventions. [IISD RS Sources] [AIMS-SIDS Meeting Website]