Minister for Economy, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum has announced Fiji’s intention to issue the first Blue Bond in the Pacific in 2022 to help raise funds for a program of cutting-edge sustainable ocean-oriented projects.
While speaking during COP26 in Glasgow, Scotland, Sayed-Khaiyum says in the context of both the COVID-19 pandemic and the mounting climate crisis, Fiji’s need to unlock new and additional resources to accelerate resilience building is now more urgent.
He says Fiji’s priorities obviously cannot wait and this bond issuance is a means to accelerate the economy’s net-zero transition and increase climate resilience.
Sayed-Khaiyum says they need to ensure that their responsible stewardship of the ocean is strengthened and not weakened under the economic pressure they face.
He says Fiji is committed to designate 30% of our Exclusive Economic Zone as a marine protected area by 2030.
Sayed-Khaiyum has highlighted Fiji has the will to do this but even the best intentions can be stymied without dedicated financial resources.
The Minister also says the Blue Bond concept marries our desire to drive financial innovation and our advocacy for greater action to protect ocean.
He further says a blue economy can also lend Fiji economic resilience.
Sayed-Khaiyum adds COVID-19’s decimation of Fiji’s tourism industry has underscored the need to widen the economic base and they intend to do so in part through primary industries that includes fisheries, forestry and agriculture.
He says Fijians both young and old, Pacific islanders, and citizens of all vulnerable nations want the talking to stop and the action to begin.
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