Summary of Proposal by Expert Committee for PALM 5

March 5, 2009
[Full Text (PDF)]

The Expert Committee made the following proposals on ways to improve the Pacific island Leaders Meeting (PALM) and policy and themes of Japan's cooperation to be discussed at PALM 5:

1. Relations between Japan and Pacific Island Countries (PICs)

(1) Engagement as equal partners in the Pacific community

  • Work with Pacific island countries as equal partners, who share the Pacific Ocean, on common regional issues such as environment and marine resources. The equal partnership should be based on mutual trust and go beyond "donor-recipient" relations.

(2) Assistance for promoting regional cooperation

  • Help create a sustainable mechanism for tackling region-wide issues, including through the establishment of a fund.

(3) Cooperation that complements ODA and stimulates private sector

  • Study measures to promote private sector activities, including trade, investment, tourism, fishery, and cultural and sports exchange.
  • Recognize the importance of air route access as a basis for enhancing relations between Japan and PICs.

(4) Comprehensive human resource development plan for long-term relations

  • Aim at human resource development designed to strengthen long-lasting relations between Japan and PICs, in addition to current cooperation aimed at PIC's nation building.

(5) Promoting coordination among donors in the region, maintaining the uniqueness of Japan's ODA

  • Whilst keeping Japan's own aid approach and its strength, advance coordination with other donors such as Australia and New Zealand, and consider how to engage with emerging donors such as China.

2. PALM Process

(1) Formulate policy objectives based on long-term perspective and establish implementation cycle / mechanism

  • Secure sufficient preparation period for PALM by deciding the venue with persuasive reasons and well in advance.
  • Consider the frequency and mid-term activities of PALM. Consider regularization of review process / policy conference.

(2) PR activities for raising public awareness of / interest in PALM

  • Make a catchphrase for PALM.
  • Designate an anniversary as 'Pacific Islands' Day'.

3. Policy of Japan's Cooperation towards PICs at PALM 5

<Improving Japan's cooperation>

  • (1) Not overly comprehensive but well prioritized and concentrated to achieve a greater impact.
  • (2) Speedy implementation
  • (3) Balance between country-specific assistance and assisntance on region-wide issues
  • (4) Taking into account and coping with the Pacific islands' vulnerabilities
  • (5) Increased cooperation between the public and private sectors as well as NGOs and NPOs.

<Pillars of Japan's cooperation at PALM 5>

(1) Environment and Climate Change

  • While implementing climate change mitigation and adaptation measures, encourage PICs to address environmental issues by themselves.
  • Under the concept of the Pacific community, consider approach to work together with PICs to deal with environment and climate change issues.

(2) Human Security

  • Stregthen assistance to help meet the MDGs especially in the fields of water, subsistence agriculture, education, and health.

(3) Human Resource Development

  • To work out a human resource development plan in consideration of the scarcity of population of PICs. Coherent and continuous assistance needed. Make a better use of "Senior Volunteers" in addition to the JOCVs. Nurturing experts in various fields including environment.

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