MINISTER for Foreign Affairs & External Trade Jeremiah Manele on Wednesday has addressed the India Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting in New York.
The India Pacific Islands Leaders Dialogue was attended by Prime Ministers and Ministers of different pacific island countries and organised by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Speaking during the occasion Minister Manele said the South-South cooperation remains a cornerstone of the Solomon Islands foreign policy.
He said it is a partnership that is based on the principles of mutual benefit, sovereignty, ownership, equality and is non-conditionality.
“South-South cooperation compliments North–South and contributes to a triangular cooperation. This form of partnership is the life blood of translating the SDGs into action.
“It is inspired by the 2030 agenda, Goal 17 of the SDG is about partnership. Partnership is needed to translated the Paris Agreement, the Samoan pathway and Istanbul Programme of Action into action,” Minister Manele said.
The Foreign Minister said the South-South Cooperation offered by India demonstrates India’s hand of friendship to the Pacific.
“These principles are important and relevant for the Pacific, noting Pacific SIDS who are members of the United Nations are at different levels of development. Four are classified as Least Developed Countries, two are post conflict states and nine of the twelve Pacific Islands countries have no UN presence, all nine managed out of the regional office in Suva,” he said.
Minister Manele told the leaders that India’s commitment multilaterally and bilaterally is timely as the world strives to advance the 2030 agenda for sustainable development.
He said the commitments under the Paris Agreement remains low as we head for a 3 degrees world.
“As fish move out of our waters, water and food security slowly defining our future, preparing our populations for the onslaught of climate change is now a new reality.
“The Paris Agreement lacks political will to put us on a below 1.5 degrees Celsius pathway going into the future. This creates an uncertain future for the Agreement and the Pacific,” he said.
Minister Manele emphasised that building resilience states is in Solomon Islands collective interests.
“Solomon Islands welcomes engagement with India multilaterally and bilaterally,” he said.