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November 23, 2010

Interview with Hon. Enele Sopoaga, Minister of Environment, Foreign affairs and Labors

On October 16th, Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting Ministerial Interim Meeting (henceforth: PALMMIM) was held in Tokyo, Japan to follow up the results of the 5th Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting (PALM5) and to prepare for the coming 6th Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting (PALM6) in Nago city in Okinawa on 25th and 26th of May, 2011. This interim meeting was  the first trial that ministerial-level people gathered from 16 countries and regions. Hon. Enele Sopoaga, Minister of Environment, Foreign affairs and Labor, attended that meeting as Tuvalu delegation.

I interviewed to Hon. Enele Sopoaga about PALMMIM and also COP16 that will be held on the end of November in Cancun, Mexico.

“At first, I would really like to express my gratitude for the big support of Japan to Pacific island countries, especially the supports for the Climate Change to Tuvalu.
Although PALMMIM was the new challenge, feel it was significant meeting since Japan mentioned that the future supports to Pacific island countries should be clearer, flexible and quickly one. Especially, the flexibility is very needed, because governments of some Pacific island don’t have enough capacities to submit the appropriate requests to get grant aid It is very grateful that we could share the Pacific islands’ special conditions in this occasion. Without PALMMIM, we could not get this big progress for the future in cooperative relationship between Japan and Pacific island countries.
In the PALMMIM we discussed about the coming PALM6. I am satisfied with the discussions. We had the agenda, the youth exchange program to make the stronger relationship between Japan and Pacific island countries . I would like to commit expanding this program to the ministerial-level exchange. . I would like Mr. Seiji Maehara, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, and Ms. Makiko Kikuta, Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, to visit to Tuvalu near future.”


Regarding COP16 on the end of November in Cancun, Mexico;

“Unfortunately, We didn’t get any satisfied results from COP15 in Copenhagen. Pacific island countries, especially Tuvalu, are actually affected by the increasing intensity of cyclones, coastal erosion which is considered to be occurred by the sea-level rise. There is no time left to us. Nevertheless, developed countries such as Japan are talking about restructuring the framework of Kyoto Protocol. They should leave it and add postscripts if it is necessary, and make an effort to win BRICS over to our side.
Regarding the contents of the present Kyoto Protocol, we need quick-acting medicine. . We do not have a moment to lose.
I want strongly to convince world society that “now is the time to take action”.

Tuvalu is seeking the resolve that leads to the effective activities for our future into the COP16 on November.