The Government of Fiji held the Presidency of the 23rd Session of the Conference of Parties (COP23) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) from November 2017 till December 2018. This was the first COP Presidency from a small island country that is particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, therefore, it had gathered a lot of attention worldwide. The preparation for, and conduct of a COP Presidency is complex which involves political, technical and organizational aspects. The outcome of COP23 and the work undertaken in 2018 must maintain the momentum of the Paris Agreement and advance the work of the UNFCCC, including making progress on the Paris Agreement implementation guidelines.
The Government of Canada had provided financial support to assist Fiji’s successful COP Presidency. The Government of Canada had noted that it was an important milestone for COP23 to be chaired by a small island developing state, to ensure that the concerns and priorities of Fiji and other SIDS were fully reflected in the COP process. This project enhanced efforts, already supported by UNDP, to integrate Pacific SIDS concerns and priorities as well as helping build a strong Fijian COP23 Presidency and national climate change team. It is also assisting in a deeper and more vibrant Canada-Fiji relationship.
The project’s aim was for Fiji and Pacific’s strengthened engagement in the UNFCCC process. This was be achieved through two major outputs:
- Support Fiji’s engagement in the development and implementation of the Talanoa Facilitative Dialogue, the Climate Action Pacific Partnership and the Global Youth Forum;
- Fiji National Climate Negotiations team can effectively negotiate informed climate actions and advocate for gender inclusion.