Member States Approve Draft Outcome of SIDS Conference

samoa-conference11 July 2014: UN Member States approved the Draft Outcome of the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS), titled 'SIDS Accelerated Modalities of Action [S.A.M.O.A.] Pathway,' concluding the work of the Preparatory Committee for the conference, on 11 July 2014.

The PrepCom recommended the draft outcome document to the Conference for adoption. The conference will take place from 1-4 September 2014, in Apia, Samoa, under the overarching theme, 'The Sustainable Development of SIDS through Genuine and Durable Partnerships.'

The preamble recognizes SIDS's ownership and leadership in overcoming some of their challenges, while stressing the critical role of international cooperation and partnerships of various kinds and across a wide variety of stakeholders in the implementation of SIDS' sustainable development. It further notes that such partnerships should be based on the principle of national ownership, mutual trust, transparency and accountability.

The draft outcome welcomes the recent Green Climate Fund (GCF) board decision to aim for a floor of 50% of the adaptation allocation for particularly vulnerable countries, including SIDS, and notes the importance of continued support to address gaps in capacity in accessing and managing climate finance. The document further reaffirms the need for a “smooth transition” of SIDS that have recently graduated from LDC status, and emphasizes that a successful transition needs to be based on the national smooth transition strategy elaborated as a priority by each graduating country that can, inter alia, mitigate the possible loss of concessionary financing and reduce the risks of falling heavily into debt.

The text also underscores the need for adequate and coordinated support from the UN system, and the importance of accessible and transparent support from the international financial institutions that fully takes into account the specific needs and vulnerabilities of SIDS, for the implementation of the Barbados Programme of Action (BPOA), Mauritius Strategy for Implementation (MSI), and SAMOA Pathway. It calls for a renewed dedication of UN system support for SIDS-SIDS cooperation and national, regional and inter regional coordination.

The S.A.M.O.A. Pathway document is structured in 19 sections: Sustained and Sustainable, Inclusive and Equitable Economic Growth with Decent Work for All (with sub-sections on 'Development models in SIDS for the implementation of sustainable development and poverty eradication' and 'Sustainable tourism'); Climate Change; Sustainable Energy; Disaster Risk Reduction; Oceans and Seas; Food Security and Nutrition; Water and Sanitation; Sustainable Transport; Sustainable Consumption and Production; Management of Chemicals and Waste, Including Through Hazardous Waste; Health and NCDs; Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment; Social Development (Culture and Sport, Promoting Peaceful Societies and Safe Communities, Education); Biodiversity (Desertification, land degradation and drought, Forests); Invasive Alien Species, Means of implementation, Including Partnerships (with sub-sections on: Partnerships; Financing; Trade; Capacity Building; Technology; Data and Statistics; and Institutional support to SIDS); SIDS Priorities for the Post-2015 Development Agenda; and Monitoring and Accountability.

The draft outcome requests the UN Secretary-General to report to the UN General Assembly (UNGA) and the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) on progress on implementing SIDS priorities, commitments, partnerships and other activities. It also requests the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) to continue to maintain a SIDS-focused partnerships platform and to regularly convene the interagency consultative group to report on the full implementation of the BPOA, MSI and SAMOA Pathway with adequate and timely analysis based on SIDS-relevant targets and indicators in order to ensure accountability at all levels.

The report of the PrepCom (A/CONF.223/PC/L.3) will be finalized incorporating the proceedings of the final meeting. [SAMOA Pathway] [UN Journal, 15 July 2014] [SIDS Conference Website]