Input to Preparatory Process
A/C.2/68/L.67 (Para 13) - Invites participants in the meetings of the Preparatory Committee to send
written inputs on the objectives and substantive theme of the Conference to the
Secretariat in advance of the first meeting of the Committee, and invites the
Secretariat to make them available electronically;
Input from the Delegation of Japan To the Preparatory Process for the Third International Conference On Small Island Developing States
Modality of the outcome document
Since the primary aim of the outcome document should be to underline the emergency of the challenges faced by the SIDS in order to strengthen their partnership with the international community, it is necessary that the document send a strong and clear message to the world. Though there were two outcome documents at the last SIDS Conference – a political declaration (Mauritius Declaration) and an action plan (Mauritius Strategy) – Japan believes that in the current context we should refrain from revising or creating a new action plan, since the progress of the implementation of the Mauritius Strategy has still to be reviewed at the High Level Political Forum. Therefore, at the upcoming Conference, we should be adopt a brief, concise and focused political declaration, which incorporates a limited number of prioritized themes.
The perspective of human security, which calls for a people-centered approach, is useful in addressing complex and interrelated challenges, and therefore this perspective should be properly taken into account as we consider ways to address the various challenges faced by the SIDS and as we formulate the outcome document.
Prioritized fields/themes proposed by Japan
-Climate change and energy
The international community needs to make a concerted effort to implement their measures to tackle climate change, putting special emphasis on issue of adaptation, to which vulnerable countries, such as the SIDS, place a high priority. In addition to these efforts, the transfer of environmentally-sound technologies, especially those related to renewable energy and energy efficiency, become extremely important. Such transfers are also meaningful to SIDS directly as a means to provide affordable energy.
-Disaster Risk Reduction
Building a disaster-resilient-society is crucial for SIDS because they are located in disaster prone areas. Promoting both infrastructure (e.g. observation equipment such as seismographs, early warning systems, etc.) and software (e.g. educating/training local residents how to promptly and safely evacuate in the event of a natural disaster) is important for this objective.
-Ocean issues (fishery)
A large portion of the food supply of the SIDS comes from the ocean, and sustainable use of marine resources bears great importance for them. To this end, establishing rules regarding the use of marine resources within both international and regional frameworks (e.g. CITES, FAO, RFMOs) and providing technical assistance through both international and regional bodies as well as bilateral channels are effective.
With the double burden of infectious diseases and the growing prevalence of non-communicable diseases (NCD), a comprehensive health policy is greatly needed in SIDS. Access to essential health services as well as increased financial protection will play a central role in achieving universal health coverage (UHC). Furthermore, the sustainability of UHC with cost-effective and good quality service is needed in preparation for an aging society.
With scarce land on the one hand, and small amounts of waste (not suitable for large waste disposal facilities) on the other, it is most effective and realistic for SIDS to focus on enhancing and promoting and waste reclamation and the 3Rs (Reducing, Reusing, and Recycling), or the 4Rs (3R plus returning recyclable goods to countries of origin).
-Gender (empowerment of women)
Given their relatively small populations, the economies and societies of the SIDS will greatly benefit from the enhanced empowerment of women.
Statement by the Delegation of Japan
First session of the Preparatory Committee for the
Third International Conference on small island developing States
Ladies and Gentleman,
Let me begin by expressing our congratulations to H.E. Karen Tan, Permanent Representative of Singapore, and H.E. Phillip Taula, Deputy Permanent Representative of New Zealand, on their assumption of the duties of co-chairs of the Committee. We believe that Their Excellencies will play excellent leading roles, and Japan, as a Bureau member, is committed to actively contributing to the process leading up to the International Conference in September.
As we are all aware, the economic, environmental and social challenges which SIDS face have become increasingly imminent. This is why we are determined to underline anew the emergency of these challenges at the next International Conference. In order to send a clear message, it is important that the outcome document is brief, concise and focused. In other words we should make this Conference an opportunity to reaffirm what the priorities are, rather than trying to cover all of the relevant topics.
With such understanding, allow me to touch upon Japan’s basic position and ideas on the priorities to be outlined in the outcome document.
Overall in considering ways to address various challenges faced by SIDS, the perspective of human security, which calls for people-centered approach, should be properly taken into account in the formation of the outcome document.
As for specific themes, Japan would like to raise six points.
First, on climate change, the international community needs to make a concerted effort, putting special emphasis on adaptation to which vulnerable countries, especially SIDS, place high priority. In addition, transfer of environmentally-sound technologies, especially those related to renewable energy and energy saving, become extremely important. Such means are also meaningful from the viewpoint of providing affordable energy to SIDS.
Second, building a disaster-resilient-society is also crucial for SIDS as they are located in disaster prone areas. Infrastructure such as observation equipment and early warning system, together with education or training for safe evacuation is important in this respect.
Third, the ocean is obviously of great importance for SIDS. Sustainable use of its resources should be promoted through rule-making at international/regional frameworks supported by technical cooperation.
Forth, in regard to health, SIDS is facing the double burden of infectious diseases and growing prevalence of non-communicable diseases (NCD) and in response, a comprehensive health policy is greatly needed. Access to essential health services as well as increased financial protection will play a central role to achieve universal health coverage (UHC). Furthermore, sustainability of UHC with cost-effective and good quality services is needed in preparation for an aging society.
Fifth, with scarce land on one side, and small amount of waste on the other, it is effective and realistic for SIDS to focus on 3R, 4R and waste reclamation.
Finally, sixth, given the relatively small size of population, it should be noted that the economy and society of SIDS will greatly benefit from an enhanced empowerment of women.
Japan sees itself as an active player in each of the areas that has just been referred to, and we look forward to having an effective and fruitful discussion with you all in the months to come.