European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica has announced EUR 20 million to support sustainable energy and agriculture projects in the Pacific. Commissioner Mimica made the announcement during his opening address at the Pacific Conference on Sustainable Energy and Climate Change in Auckland, New Zealand today.
”I am pleased to announce that to take forward our commitment to supporting investment the EU will make a special allocation of EUR 20 million to the EU Investment Facility for the Pacific to leverage investment projects in sustainable energy and agriculture in the region involving the private sector,” Commissioner Mimica told participants of the conference.
”Agriculture is a key sector for sustainable development in the region. Together with fisheries, agriculture provides the basic livelihood for the majority of the people in the Pacific. Our efforts and partnership to improving access to sustainable energy in the rural areas will no doubt facilitate agricultural growth. But improving energy alone will not be enough. That is why it is important that we support agriculture and rural development also directly,” said Commissioner Mimica.
Commissioner Mimica also announced that the EU will make available a further amount of EUR 14.5 million to support Fiji, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Palau, Papua New Guinea (PNG) and Timor Leste to recover from the severe impacts of El Niño. EUR 5 million will be located to Fiji, while PNG and Timor Leste will receive EUR 3 million and EUR 2 million respectively. EUR 4.5 million is made available for Marshall Islands, Micronesia and Palau.
Commissioner Mimica said the EU jointly with the Pacific have been at the forefront of international efforts to conclude the Paris agreement (international agreement on climate change) and will continue to support its implementation to reduce emissions and build resilience in developing countries, with a special focus on Small Islands Developing States. From 2014-2020, the EU will spend at least EUR 14 billion, an average of 2 billion per year to support activities in developing countries.