The informal ministerial “Pre-COP” meeting was held from 17-18 October 2017 on Denarau Island in Nadi, Fiji. With less than three weeks left before the next UN Climate Change Conference (COP23) in November, the Pre-COP meeting presented Ministers with the opportunity for an honest exchange of views on key issues of the COP23 agenda before the negotiations begin in Bonn.
The meeting took place in the immediate aftermath of a number of devastating weather events in Asia, the Caribbean, Europe, North America and the Pacific. These extreme events reminded participants of the urgent need to make rapid progress in the intergovernmental negotiations and for all parties to commit to ambitious climate action in order to limit global warming to 1.5°C, the more ambitious target of the Paris Agreement.
As the first small island state to be chosen to preside over the climate negotiations, Fiji took every opportunity to reinforce this sense of urgency. The Pre-COP brought together Ministers, Heads of Climate Change Delegations and Chief Negotiators from 68 countries. Current COP22/CMP12/CMA1-1 President Salaheddine Mezouar, Secretary of State and Climate Minister Pawel Salek of Poland, UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed, UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa and many other political leaders and ambassadors joined the meeting. Also present were the presiding officers of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) subsidiary bodies: SBI, SBSTA and APA. In total, more than 300 participants gathered in Fiji, making this gathering the largest Pre-COP in the history of the UNFCCC.
The incoming Fijian COP23/CMP13/CMA1-2 President, Frank Bainimarama, and the Fijian COP23 Presidency team were honoured by the large attendance, perceived as an expression of strong support for the Fijian Presidency and its priorities.
The Pre-COP was organised around five important themes:
- 1.Expectations for COP23;
- 2.Operationalisation of the Paris Agreement;
- 3.Climate finance;
- 4.Raising the ambition of Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs); and
- 5.Risk management and resilience.
A high-level overview of the discussions on these themes is provided in the link below.
ABOUT THE PARTNERSHIP DAY
The COP23 Presidency held a “Partnership Day” for invited guests on 16 October 2017 in advance of the Pre-COP. The objective of the Partnership Day was to build on the outcomes of the Climate Action Pacific Partnership (CAPP) Conference held in Suva July 2017, the UNFCCC Climate Action Agenda, and on international efforts to help build a grand coalition for climate action.
This was an opportunity to highlight best practices, examine potential transformative innovations and develop productive processes – providing valuable inputs into the work of the Presidency, not just for COP23 in November, but for the rest of 2018 and beyond.
Fiji is a parliamentary democracy in the South Pacific Ocean, located about 2,000 km northeast of New Zealand. It has a population of about 900,000 people. Most of the people live on the two main islands, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, but the entire population is distributed across about 110 of Fiji’s more than 300 islands.