The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) is partnering with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to support a national Climate Finance and Risk Governance (CFRG) Assessment being undertaken by Tonga’s Ministry of Finance and National Planning (MFNP). The study assesses Tonga’s national plans and policies on climate change and disaster risk reduction, funding sources, expenditure and public financial management, institutional coordination, human capacity, development effectiveness, and gender and social inclusiveness.
The MFNP officially requested support from UNDP and PIFS for undertaking this assessment. In response, this support is being led by UNDP through its Pacific Risk Resilience Programme (PRRP), in partnership with PIFS, USAID Adapt Asia-Pacific, and UN Women.
The PRRP, which provides core funding for the assessment, works with Pacific Island Countries and their people to think about the risks they may face from climate change and disasters when they are making their usual plans for development. Communities can become more resilient to climate change and disasters if routine government, community and other planning takes these risks into account.
This Risk Governance approach is supported by the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), and implemented by UNDP and international non-government organization Live and Learn Environmental Education (LLEE). PRRP is being delivered in four countries: Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Tonga and Fiji.
The first round of consultations and assessment of national systems was completed from 19 – 30 January 2015.
During the first country visit, the multi-stakeholder team met with the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Environment and Climate Change, Honourable Siaosi Sovaleni; Minister for Finance and National Planning, Honourable Dr Aisake Eke; the Minister for Internal Affairs, Honourable Fe’ao Vakata; the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Environment and Climate Change; senior Government officials of the Ministry of Finance and other line ministries; donors and development partners; non-government organizations; and the private sector. Further, the Cabinet noted the work of the CFRG Assessment team.
A second country visit to present the preliminary findings is planned for March and the final report is expected by June.
This is the third national assessment that PIFS and UNDP have partnered to support. In addition to Tonga, earlier assessments include Nauru (2013) and the Republic of the Marshall Islands (2014)