Palau Annual Programme Review 2022

Posted June 15, 2022

Honorable Minister of State, Hon. Gustavo Aitaro (Co-Chair) 

Esteemed senior representatives from government  

Distinguished guests 

Colleagues 

Alii, bula vinaka and a very good morning. 

Welcome to the second Annual Programme Review (APR) between UNDP and Palau. Firstly, may I congratulate the Government of Palau again for being an excellent host to the successful ‘Our Oceans Conference’, something that everyone in the Republic of Palau can be proud of. I was indeed grateful to be in Palau during the Conference and witnessed firsthand your beautiful and proud nation. Thank you again for your hospitality. 

We can’t thank you enough for your support for UNDP’s presence in Palau and its associated development engagements over the years. There is no doubt that through the wise leadership of your government and the work of our respective implementing Ministries in Palau, UNDP has made some important contributions to your development efforts. We also recognize some of the key highlights on the important role of Indigenous, Women and Youth leadership in the sustainable development of SIDS where Ocean is a primary source of sustenance.  

We are also grateful for the continuing partnership through institutional strengthening through disaster risks management, marine biodiversity conservation, local governance and gender responsive development work. This signifies our commitment and strength in both our relation and partnership in supporting the governments of Palau accelerate its achievement of the 2030 Agenda.  

I am grateful for the high-level representation here today from the Government and I’m confident and optimistic that with the key decision makers present here today, we will have a strategic dialogue.  

I trust that you will find this dialogue to be an opportunity to take stock of our joint programme, to look ahead in partnership, and to share information on Palau’s emerging priorities and challenges to best inform our next five years strategic programme intervention. 

Whilst the meeting is specifically for UNDP Programmatic focus in Palau, we also endevour to work with other UN agencies to ensure complementarities and synergies in the programmes we collectively deliver. In this endevour, distinctively we work closely with the UN Resident Co-ordinator’s Office responsible for co-ordinating UN programmatic activities and at the same time, as UNDP, ensuring that our programmatic presence is fit for purpose, relevant and responsive to the country’s development trajectory. 

Purpose of the APR 

The reason we here is clear – we would like to present the areas of collaboration and 2021 key results highlights and 2022 priorities. 

We would like to use this opportunity to also introduce the strategic development interventions in the coming 5 years under the new Multi Country Programme Document (MCPD). This is in alignment with the UN Common Framework draft on Planet, Peace and Prosperity.   

Support for regional and international commitments 

I would like to assure you of UNDP’s support towards all of Palau ’s regional and international commitments, including the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.  

The Addis Ababa Action Agenda, adopted in 2015, aligns financing flows and policies with economic, social, and environmental priorities and provides us with a strong foundation for progress.  

UNDP also intends to support Palau to address the Samoa Pathway priorities, including sustainable energy, disaster risk reduction, and climate change. While those action areas feature in UNDP’s country and regional programmes, we are interested in your level of satisfaction with the assistance provided.  

Willingness to adapt and upscale cooperation  

I look forward to the discussions this morning, which I hope will reveal how we can improve our joint programme. The dialogue may result in a sharpening of our focus on certain vulnerabilities, or it may affirm that our programme is well-suited to Palau’s current and next 5 years development context.  

We are open to your feedback and assure you it will be used to provide you with better development assistance. We warmly welcome all your insights and suggestions.  

However, we can access global and regional offers, including the UNDP Climate Promise and the Pacific SIDS Offer, to ramp up assistance in the areas of climate action, gender, digitalization, and the green/blue economy. UNDP is also able to coordinate with other donors if you identify needs in areas outside of our remit.  

In conclusion, I assure you that Palau has UNDP’s strong support. We hope that our partnership will be strengthened by this dialogue and confirm our commitment to delivering sustainable results for the benefit of all the people of Palau, particularly vulnerable groups including women, youths and people living with disability. This mutual partnership between Palau and UNDP will no doubt provide the basis for addressing some of the major challenges in the future. 

Thank you for your time today, your cooperation with all UNDP staff working to support Palau, and for your commitment to strengthening our partnership.