The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Environment, Conservation, Climate Change and Meteorology, Dr Melchior Mataki today signed an agreement aimed at ensuring the effective operation of the Global Climate Fund (GCF) in Solomon Islands.

Dr Mataki signed the agreement with the GCF Interim Executive Director, Mr Javier Manzanarez, in New York today, at margin of the 71st UNGA. This historic event witnessed by the Co-Chairs of the GCF Board, Mr Zaheer Fakir, representing South Africa, and Mr Ewen McDonald, representing Australia, was held at the Solomon Islands Mission to the United Nations.

Given the seriousness and urgency of the global challenge of climate change, the Green Climate Fund was established to help societies vulnerable to climate change to adapt to the impacts of this unavoidable phenomenon and to transform to low carbon economy by investing in mitigation.

Dr Mataki said the signing of the agreement grants the GCF immunities and privileges that are critical for its effective operation in Solomon Islands and marks Solomon Islands eligibility to access the funding from the GCF.

He said the first project in Solomon Islands earmarked to be submitted for funding under the GCF is the Tina Hydropower Project and his ministry is working with the World Bank to put together this submission.

Dr Mataki said the GCF has been included as an international organization under Solomon Islands Immunity and Privileges Act through a gazette by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and External Trade, Hon Milner Tozaka, adding that today’s signing has formalised this gazette dated Tuesday 10th May 2016.