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Seychelles to Speak at Pacific Islands Conference

Former Seychelles President James Alix Michel has been invited to attend the 1st High-Level Pacific Blue Economy Conference (PBEC) under the theme ‘Sustainable Oceans in a Changing Climate’ organised by the Pacific Islands Development Forum to be held in Suva Fiji on 23rd and 24th August 2017. The conference is being held in conjunction with the PIDF Biennial Conference.

Mr Michel has been invited as a keynote speaker by the Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands and the Chair of the Pacific Islands Development Forum, Hon. Manasseh D. Sogavare MP, in order to share his understanding of the development of the Blue Economy concept and the Seychelles’ experience for the benefit of Pacific island countries.

In his letter of invitation to President Michel, Prime Minister Manasseh Sagavare said: “We believe that your commitment to the development of the Blue Economy is unparalleled and your participation as a speaker at this conference will be of great benefits to the Pacific Island Countries.”

“I am deeply honoured to share my experience with other Small Island Development States in the Pacific. We have a great sense of solidarity in the face of climate change and in the fight to protect our ocean resources. It will be an opportune moment to reflect on the transformative nature of the Blue Economy as well as the concrete implications of implementing the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 14”, said President Michel.

Mr Michel will be accompanied at the Conference by the Chief Executive Officer of the James Michel Foundation, Mr Jacquelin Dugasse.

Approximately 150 participants are expected at the conference, coming primarily from PIDF member countries in the region, representatives of multilateral institutions, the UN, and other development partners, and international and regional organizations, representatives of private sector, representatives of philanthropic organizations, NGOs and other member of civil society, including the public as well as representatives of research institutes and academia.

A key outcome of the conference will be a Declaration on Oceans and Climate Change, which will draw on the outcomes of the UN Oceans Conference (5th-9th June, New York) as well as prepare the Pacific countries for the upcoming international climate meeting of COP23, taking place between6th-17th November in Bonn, Germany.

The PBEC shall provide a comprehensive Roadmap for developing the concept of the Blue Economy in the Pacific. It shall capture the plenary and parallel session discussions on the challenges, opportunities and priorities associated with the Blue Economy for the Pacific Islands, with linkages to the outcomes of the UN Conference on SDG14 and with the SDG13 to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.

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