SIDS Preparatory Meeting for the 10-Year Review of the Barbados Programme of Action (BPOA)
United Nations Headquarters, New York | 14-16 April 2004 

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Highlights from Wednesday, 14 April 2004

The 12th session of the Commission of Sustainable Development (CSD-12) opened on Wednesday at UN headquarters in New York. During the opening Plenary, the Commission heard opening remarks, elected its officers, and adopted its agenda and organization of work. On preparations for the International Meeting (IM) to review the implementation of the programme of action for the sustainable development of small island developing States (SIDS), delegates considered the accreditation of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and other Major Groups to the IM, and heard introductory statements and a presentation of the outcome of the SIDS inter-regional meeting. In the late morning and throughout the afternoon, delegates convened in informal consultations to begin deliberations on the Strategy Document.

Photo: CSD Chair Børge Brende (center) with the Secretariat (right)

Official Opening of CSD-12


CSD-12 Chair and Norway's Environment Minister Børge Brende opened the session on Wednesday morning, and said CSD-12 and 13 offer a unique opportunity to focus on implementing actions towards achieving the internationally-agreed goals and targets on water, sanitation and human settlements. He also drew attention to the first three days of the session, to be devoted to the preparations for the International Meeting for the Review of the Implementation of the Barbados Programme of Action (BPOA).






 Anwarul Chowdhury, Secretary-General of the Mauritius International Meeting, said the Meeting must examine the shortfalls in the implementation of the BPOA and address why matters have not advanced since the BPOA+5 review in 1999. He said it was necessary to address concrete actions regarding new and emerging issues such as HIV/AIDS, market access, information and communication technology and security. He said the International Meeting should focus on how to make a positive difference in promoting the welfare and wellbeing of the people in SIDS, and how SIDS can gain the support, genuine commitment and political will of all partners to make substantive headway in implementing the BPOA.


Introducing the UN Secretary-General’s report on Review of Progress in the Implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of SIDS (E/CN.17/2004/8), José Antonio Ocampo, UN Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, said the report provides a comprehensive review of the overall implementation of the BPOA, describes the continuing challenges facing SIDS, and identifies those areas where additional support of the international community is required.







Paulette Bethel, Bahamas, presented the outcomes of the inter-regional preparatory meeting held in Nassau, Bahamas in January 2004. She highlighted the Nassau Declaration and the AOSIS Strategy Paper for the Further Implementation of the BPOA.



Jagdish Koonjul, Mauritius, speaking for the G-77/China, presented and outlined the Strategy Document, highlighting the special challenges faced by SIDS in sustainable development, and urging greater understanding and cooperation from the international community in honoring their commitments from Rio and Barbados. On the UN Secretary General’s report, he cautioned against the impression that SIDS can resolve their sustainable development challenges by themselves, and said this idea does not embrace the spirit of partnership of the BPOA and the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD).




Dick Roche T.D, Ireland, speaking on behalf of the EU, said the International Meeting should be action-oriented, and should not renegotiate the BPOA, but rather reinforce the importance of national country-driven and-owned strategies for poverty reduction and sustainable development. He added that the Meeting should focus the international community's role in supporting these national initiatives. He also highlighted a history of cooperation between the EU and SIDS, and noted areas such as climate change and renewable energy, where the EU considers SIDS as its key partners.




David Bolton, US, expressed concern over the structure and content of the Strategy Document, noting that it is too long and detailed,  seeks to alter language that has been negotiated in other international fora, and contains issues not specific to SIDS. He suggested a shorter, more focused and balanced document for negotiation at the International Meeting.

Bikeubau, Paeniu, Tuvalu, asked delegates to not disregard the work of the SIDS ministers on the Strategy Document. He called on international financial institutions to fund BPOA implementation.




  Don Mackay, New Zealand, who facilitated the intersessional informal consultations, reported on the two informal "informals", noting that these sessions provided delegates with the opportunity to express their initial views on the Strategy Document, including through a chapter-by-chapter reading where delegates identified areas of convergence and areas where further discussions would be required.



Informal Consultations

Opening the informal consultations, Facilitator Mackay underscored the mandate of the International Meeting, which he said is to seek a renewed political commitment by the international community to SIDS, focusing on practical action for the further implementation of the BPOA, and taking into consideration new and emerging challenges. He said the informals would focus on the Strategy Document and the agenda for the International Meeting.






Miscellaneous Photos



Relevant Links

The Barbados Plan of Action

BPOA+5 review

The 2002 GA resolution calling for the 10-year review

Pacific Regional Meeting, Samoa, 4-8 August 2003

Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Mediterranean, and the South China Sea (AIMS) Regional Meeting, Cape Verde, 1-5 September, 2003

Caribbean Regional Meeting, Trinidad, 6-10 October 2003

Expert meetings

Inter-Regional Preparatory Meeting for the 10 Year Review of the BPoA

Nassau Declaration

AOSIS Strategy Paper for the Further Implementation of the BPOA

List of SIDS



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