Press release

Seychelles calls for ‘sustainable oceans’ to be at the heart of Sustainable Development Goals

September 25, 2013

Vice President Danny Faure has made an appeal for the United Nations to place oceans and the ‘Blue economy’ as a key part of the debate on setting ‘Sustainable Development Goals’ to succeed the ‘Millennium Development Goals’.

The Vice President was speaking as a keynote speaker at a special ‘High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development’ in the margins of the United Nations General Assembly which follows on from the discussions held as part of the Rio +20 Conference on Sustainable Development.

The Secretary General of the United Nations, H.E Mr. Ban Ki Moon and the President of the United Nations General Assembly, H.E Mr. John Ashe, jointly launched the High Level Forum.  It is the first time that such a forum is held as part of the UNGA.

In his remarks, the Vice President stressed that oceanic development is essential for islands to be able to eradicate poverty and establish truly sustainable economies:

“For Small Island Developing States like Seychelles, which are surrounded by and heavily dependent on the ocean, it is not possible to map the way forward on eradicating poverty and achieving sustainable development in our countries without focusing special attention on our ocean based economies, or what we call the Blue Economy.”

The High Level event is also part of the debate towards establishing the post 2015 development agenda, whereby ‘Sustainable Development Goals’ will replace the ‘Millennium Development Goals’.

The Vice President has also reiterated the view expressed at the recent AIMS meeting held in Seychelles on the preparations for the Conference on Small Island Developing States, that it is essential that the SDGs give attention to the sustainable development of oceans.

The Vice President also emphasized the importance of ensuring ‘smooth transitions’ for SIDS that are graduating from being Least Developed Countries to Middle Income Status. He highlighted the difficulties of high debt, and lack of access to development financing which hamper graduated SIDS. The Vice President emphasized the need for differentiated treatment for SIDS for them to be able to meet their development goals.

The Vice President was accompanied at the Forum by the Minister for Foreign Affairs Jean-Paul Adam, Seychelles Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Marie-Louise Potter and Seychelles Ambassador for SIDS and Climate Change, Ronny Jumeau.