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The High-Level Ceremony for the Signing of the Paris Agreement

By Tajuddin
In SPOTLIGHT
Apr 23rd, 2016
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President of the Federal Republic of Somalia Hassan Sheikh Mohamud

President of the Federal Republic of Somalia Hassan Sheikh Mohamud

The High-Level Ceremony for the Signing of the Paris Agreement
United Nations Headquarters
April 22, 2016
Statement of H.E. the President of the Federal Republic of Somalia
H.E. the Secretary-General of the United Nations
Heads of State and Government,
Excellencies,
Ladies and Gentlemen

I should at the outset, Mr. Secretary-General, express my profound gratitude to you for inviting me and my delegation to participate in the High-Level Ceremony for the Signature of the Paris Agreement.
It is an honour and privilege for me to represent my Government and my people at this important event, which spearheads the signing of the Paris Agreement by the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on the Climate Change.

Notwithstanding the fact that Somalia is now striving hard to recover from the effects of a prolonged crisis; however, the destruction that we have succumbed to as a result of this crisis, will not by any means deter us from becoming part of a global low-carbon future.

Somalia started acceding to the Multilateral Environmental Agreements in 1985. Its accession to the United Nations Framework Convention on the Climate Change and the Convention on Biological Diversity and their Protocols occurred in 2009 and 2010.

Addressing environment and Multilateral Environmental Agreements’ issues are critical for Somalia. However, concerted efforts are required for rebuilding the institutions, the development of environmental policies, and the strengthening of capacities to ensure post-conflict development is inclusive of environmental dimensions that are important at global and local levels.

And as the country is now undergoing reconstruction following a protracted crisis, the opportunity for mainstreaming issues pertaining to, inter alia, the impacts of the climate change into its national development strategies from the very start, is being seized.

Somalia will be committed to meeting its obligations under the Climate Change Convention. And as we are revising our environmental policies, we will make sure that the country’s institutions incorporate environmental dimensions, particularly climate change mitigation and adaptation, in all phases of the nation’s reconstruction and development strategies.

Countries that have developed rapidly and became the world’s largest economies have also caused extensive damage to their quality of air, water, and soil. Somalia will ensure that this does not happen to its environment as it is being reconstructed. It will harness its alternative energies and make its rebuilding plans energy efficient, which can greatly reduce or avoid greenhouse gas emissions.

The revised environmental policies will encompass recommendations that would call for the strengthening of political will and leadership to ensure that the green growth vision is integrated in all sectors of the society, from the central government to regional entities, to the private sector.

The ordinary citizens in different parts of the country may be unaware of negative impacts of the climate change. Sensitization campaigns are being launched by the government to raise awareness throughout the country
The private sector’s role in the resuscitation of the country has been positive. However, we will make sure that the private sector internalizes the social costs of the externalizes that result from their activities. We will ask our businessmen and businesswomen to comply with the principles of corporate social responsibility.

2015 marked a turning point in the development discourse. It marked, in my opinion, a paradigm shift in development agenda. By 2030, we are to ensure a lasting protection of our planet and its natural resources. This is in line with what is envisaged in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that have been adopted by the last UN General Assembly. We will make sure that our Climate Change Strategy is linked to the Sustainable Development Goals.

As we sign the Paris Agreement today, we want to affirm that Somalia will be bound by the provisions of the Agreement. The signing of this Agreement is indeed a landmark event. Somalia has made remarkable progress in setting the foundations for Sustainable and Climate Compatible Development. We are confident that Global Funding Mechanisms and all development actors will commit technical and financial resources to build on these foundations for a Somalia that is prepared to face challenges posed by the climate change.
Thank you for your kind attention

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