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Monday, 10 April 2017

Climate change key focus of EU ‘case for the Pacific’ roundtable

Climate change is the central focus of the European Union’s continuing relationship with the Pacific, says the international cooperation chief. Stefano Manservisi, Director-General of International Cooperation and Development of the European Commission (DEVCOM), says his organisation is fully behind the Pacific on raising awareness of climate change. European Union’s Stefano Manservisi … “100 percent backing” for the Pacific. Image: Unimedia “Having consulted already with national level authorities on how we can step-up support, notably on climate change, we are 100 percent backing determination to do more,” he told Asia Pacific Report. Manservisi is currently in the Pacific — due in New Caledonia today — meeting with leaders to discuss the European Union’s (EU) ongoing relationship under the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP)-EU Partnership Agreement, which is more commonly referred to as the Contonou Agreement. Signed in 2000, the treaty between 79 countries from Africa, the Caribbean and Pacific is the “most comprehensive partnership agreement between developing countries and the EU,” according to the commission. Aimed at reducing poverty, ensuring sustainable development and promoting democracy, peace and security, the agreement is set to expire in 2020. -Partners- “The objective is to reaffirm the full commitment of the European Union in the South Pacific, now, and in the future,” Manservisi said. Climate change challenge Part of this commitment would continue to be climate change, identified as a key concern under “global challenges” in several EU documents. This was due to the fact that since the agreement’s 2010 revision, climate change had been referenced as the central point on which future relations should be framed. This was because all the treaty’s partners were adversely affected by climate change, Manservisi said. “Well, climate change is the agenda and the main issue our partners themselves are raising with us, because, you know, they are all islands which are at risk in terms of disasters, in terms of rising oceans, in terms of difficulty of having a prosperous agriculture sector for food production.”

Source: Asia Pacific Report