UNGA78 |25 September 2023
President Ramkalawan attends AOSIS Leaders Meeting 2023
The heads of state and government of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) met in New York on September 22 on the margins of the 78th Session of the United Nations General Assembly.
President Wavel Ramkalawan, presently in New York leading the Seychelles delegation, represented Seychelles at the AOSIS high-level meeting.
Small Island developing states (Sids) continue to champion responses that account for their particular needs and circumstance. While there is greater appreciation in the international community, specific Sids solutions have yet to be effectively implemented. Critical interrelated processes and discussions are under way that will result in outcomes of pivotal importance to the AOSIS.
In this context the Prime Minister of Samoa, Fiame Naomi Mata’afa, in her capacity as the chair of the AOSIS, convened the meeting for a high-level discussion on the critical process that lies ahead.
Core areas of discussion included the 4th Sids Conference in 2024, which will adopt a new 10-year Programme of Action for Sids, the reform of the international financial architecture, including the immediate and critical step of adopting and operationalising the Multidimensional Vulnerability Index (MVI) and the Climate COP28 in December, which will finalise and operationalise and adopt a deceleration that will provide political direction in shaping the outcomes.
When he addressed the floor during the high-level dialogue, President Ramkalawan’s intervention focused predominantly on Multidimensional Vulnerability Index (MVI).
“Seychelles acknowledges the progress made so far, and commends the dedication, commitment and efforts that have gone towards conceptualising and developing a Multidimensional Vulnerability Index (MVI).
“While great strides have been made, we must however be frank and admit that as it stands, the (interim) MVI Report does not necessarily respond to our needs as Sids. We note the complexities of our individual vulnerabilities – while some vulnerabilities will apply to all such as freshwater resources, sanitation services, others, such as regional conflict and refugees etc., will only apply to some countries. We acknowledge the need to give each due consideration as there is no doubt of the negative impacts they have on our respective nations.
“On the other hand, we must also ensure that no Sids are left at a disadvantage due to the different weight of the various indicators. For example, on the basis of the indicators used during the pilot study, Seychelles has one of the highest economic vulnerability rating due to a high dependency on exports. Whereas for environment and social indicators, we have one of the lowest ratings based on geographical location outside the cyclone belts and limited flooding. However, the fact remains that all Sids are inherently vulnerable to climate change and global crises,” stressed President Ramkalawan.
Following discussions the proposed AOSIS Leaders’ Declaration was adopted followed by closing remarks by the Prime Minister of the Independent State of Samoa and Cahir of the AOSIS.
Press release from the Office of the President