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Today, Premier and Minister of Finance Honourable A. Fahie served as the keynote speaker addressing policymakers and leading experts in the fields of sustainable finance and development during the Island Finance Forum 2022.
The Island Finance Forum held virtually from 25 to 29 April provides an opportunity for stakeholders to exchange knowledge in order to drive investment for island communities and Small Island Developing States.
Premier Fahie gave the Opening Keynote address during the panel session held under the theme: LEAVE NO ONE BEHIND: BUILDING AN EQUITABLE RECOVERY FOR ISLAND COMMUNITIES.
The session focused on the relevance of putting the spotlight on inequalities for more equitable societies in island nations, has been reaffirmed considering the disparate socio-economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. As the world continues to transition into the post-pandemic era, addressing inequalities in island communities will require a holistic analysis of complex and often overlapping dimensions, which go far beyond the surface variables of income and wealth distribution.
In his address, Premier highlighted different opportunities for change. He said, “Islands are resilient and we will recover from the pandemic, but we must seize the opportunity before us to address the structural imbalances and inequalities in our societies for an inclusive and equitable recovery based on sustainable development. Small Island Developing States share common challenges and there must be a paradigm shift in terms of national life and our response to those challenges.”
Moderator for the panel was Mr. James Ellsmoor, CEO, Island Innovation. Speakers on the panel included Chief Minister of St Helena Government Honourable Julie Thomas; Development Director for the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) in the Caribbean and UK Director to the Caribbean Development Bank Mr. Stefan Kossoff; and Senior Associate, RMI - Islands Energy Program Maximiliano LainFiesta.
The overall objectives of the forum are to bridge the gap between sustainable development practitioners and financial stakeholders; help island stakeholders access expert knowledge and financial opportunities; and showcase the economic opportunities available from investing in the sustainability sector on islands.