Introducing our New COP23 Chief Negotiator, Ambassador Luke Daunivalu


Luke Daunivalu assumes the position of Chief Negotiator for the remainder of Fiji’s COP23 Presidency having played a leading role at the COP negotiations in Bonn last November and with the best part of a decade’s experience behind him within the UN system.

He first became Fiji’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the  United Nations in 2010. And after an intervening two year stint as Deputy Secretary (Policy) in the Ministry for Foreign Affairs in Suva between 2014 and 2016, he returned to New York at Ambassador level and has headed the Fijian mission to the UN ever since.

As a senior member of Fiji’s COP Presidency team, Ambassador Daunivalu successfully led the negotiations on climate finance at the Bonn session in November, which included taking the important next step to ensure that the Adaptation Fund “shall serve the Paris Agreement”. He has considerable experience with the processes of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, having been a member of the UNFCCC’s Adaptation Committee for five years from 2011 to 2016.

A lawyer before he became a diplomat, Ambassador Daunivalu holds law degrees from Australia and the United Kingdom – including a Masters in Public International Law- and has been admitted to practice in the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the High Court of Fiji.

Between 2005 and 2010, he was a State Solicitor in the Office of the Attorney General in Suva and has also served as a legal officer with the Fiji Police Force, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Trade and Commerce.

In congratulating Ambassador Daunivalu on his appointment as Chief Negotiator, the Fijian Prime Minister and COP23 President, Frank Bainimarama, said he was confident that the leadership and teamwork he would bring to the role would strengthen Fiji’s campaign for maximum ambition and maximum climate action in the lead-up to COP24 and beyond.

Prime Minister Bainimarama also thanked the outgoing Chief Negotiator, Ambassador Nazhat Shameem Khan – who is resuming her full-time duties as Fiji’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva – for what he described as her immense contribution to the success of Fiji’s COP campaign. The Prime Minister said he looked forward to Ambassador Shameem Khan continuing to build on some of the diplomatic initiatives Fiji has been pursuing in Geneva in the field of human rights and closer engagement with the various nations and agencies based there.