Mauritius participated at the first ‘Partnership for Action on Green Economy’ (PAGE) conference, led by the United Nations (UN), where advice was provided on how to build national green economy strategies.

Mauritius’ economy needs to be enhanced through a shift of investment and policies towards a new generation of assets such as clean technologies and supply efficient infrastructure, green skilled labour, well-functioning ecosystems and good governance. Initiatives discussed at the conference can be expected to facilitate the implementation of Maurice Ile Durable (MID), as the island moved towards a greener and more sustainable future.

Besides the island nation, some 30 countries such as Burkina Faso, Peru, Mongolia, and Senegal, among others, participated in the conference, which was a two day event that draws to an end today.

Such transformation will be critical for positive social, environmental and economic change. Overall, 30 countries will be given the support of PAGE by 2020 with the aim of building national green economy strategies which will lead to new job creation and skills, encourage clean technologies and eradicate environmental risks and poverty.

To facilitate these activities, developed countries such as Finland, Norway, Republic of Korea, Sweden and Switzerland showed their support by contributing over US $11 million.

More than 20 ministers from finance, environment, labour and trade from around the world, as well as 300 international experts, representatives from the business community and civil society were present at the meeting.

The conference was held in the United Arab Emirates, under the Patronage of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

“As the United Arab Emirates begins its own journey towards a more sustainable future, it is fitting that we host the inaugural meeting of UN-led PAGE,” said Rashid Ahmed Bin Fahad, UAE Minister of Environment and Water, in his welcome address. “The next few days are an opportunity to identify innovative ideas and best practices, which can be replicated and scaled-up, as well as areas of common concern that need further study and resolution. Together, country by country, we can contribute to a global transformation – one that is thriving for future generations.”

Also speaking at the PAGE inaugural session were Oyun Sanjaasuren, Minister of Environment of Mongolia; Jae-Hyun Lee, Deputy Minister of Environment, Republic of Korea; and Katariina Poskiparta, State Secretary, Ministry of Environment of Finland.

Ministers and high-level representatives from Bhutan, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, China, Denmark, Ghana, Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, Mauritius, Mexico, Morocco, Norway, Palestine, Peru, Republic of Armenia, Republic of Moldova, Saint. Lucia, Senegal, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania, Tunisia, Uganda and Uruguay took part at the conference.

PAGE is a joint initiative by UNEP, ILO, UNIDO and UNITAR offering comprehensive support to countries in search of developing and implementing inclusive green economy strategies. The UN Development Programme (UNDP) is also poised to join PAGE.

Apart from the UN Rio+20 conference in 2012, the PAGE conference was one of the first events which acted as a platform to make governments think carefully on the Green Economy as a route to achieve sustainable development and poverty eradication.

Key issues covered at the current conference were: green and decent jobs, fiscal policy and investments, green industrial policies, social inclusion and poverty eradication, trade policies and opportunities, and metrics and indicators for inclusive green economies.

Image (UNEP): The conference held in the United Arab Emirates was led by the United Nations, and advice was provided on helping countries to progress towards a more sustainable future.

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