Businesses and Civil Society Must “Be Part of the Solution” on Climate Change

“If we are not part of the solution, we are part of the problem.” This was the message Fiji’s Climate Champion, Minister Inia Seruiratu, delivered to representatives from the business community and civil society at the latest round of UN climate talks in Bonn, Germany.

“And frankly, my country and other vulnerable parts of the planet cannot afford for anyone to remain part of the problem,” he said.

The Minister was speaking at a workshop focused on engaging non-state stakeholders in the UN climate change process, a group that includes cities, businesses, non-governmental organisations and civil society.

Minister Seruiratu said that Fiji’s call to build a Grand Coalition puts an emphasis on the importance of including civil society and the private sector at the heart of the climate change agenda. “Success requires deep collaboration by a broad coalition of stakeholders. We all have a role to play,” he said.

The Minister explained that the Marrakech Partnership, which was launched at COP22 by the High-Level Champions from France and Morocco, provides a basis for the transparent collaboration between Parties and non-Parties for the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

“During these sessions we will be engaging with Parties and other stakeholders to refine this approach. This Partnership will be open for the participation and engagement of all actors, on the simple condition that they are committed to the implementation of action consistent with the aims of the Paris Agreement. I hope that today’s workshop can provide a basis for strengthening this Partnership and deepening the engagement of a variety of stakeholders with it.”

Fiji’s Climate Champion concluded his remarks by telling the participants that he joined Prime Minister Bainimarama in his pledge to bring non-state actors closer to the decision making process and that he looked forward to engaging with as many stakeholders as possible during the May meetings.