NUKU’ALOFA-July 25: 9.41am (R2R Media): Tonga is hosting the Global Environment Facility (GEF) meetings here in Nuku’alofa this week.
The official opening will be held tomorrow morning (July 26) at the Tanoa Dateline International Hotel at 9am.
However, group meetings started on Monday.
That started with the GEF Constituency Meeting at the Tanoa Dateline International Hotel yesterday, with country delegates and GEF Focal Points attending.
The Chief Executive Officer for MEIDECC, Mr Paula Ma’u, welcomed delegates at the meeting this morning on behalf of the Tongan Government.
Mr Ma’u said the Government of Tonga was grateful to be able to host the event and emphasised the importance of the GEF for Tonga.
“This meeting is an important one for Tonga as we have projects that are funded by the GEF, including the R2R project which comes to the end of its current programme in December this year,” Mr Ma’u said.
“And we believe that having the meeting here will give us the opportunity to impress the GEF and donor partners to continue to support the work that we are doing.”
He was joined by Ambassador Jane Chigiyal, the GEF Alternate Council Member.
Ms Chigival said it was important that all reps participate freely and present their reports and issues clearly so that the GEF Council is able to get precise information that would help them make clear decisions.
She added that having the GEF in Tonga will also present participants the opportunity to se the work that is being done at the ground level here to help communities in the different projects and programmes.
The GEF has funded a number of projects in Tonga, including the Tonga Ridge To Reef project, which manages the Fanga’uta Lagoon Catchment Area and the Climate Change Resilience Adaptation project in the Eastern Division of Tongatapu as well.
The meeting continues today with funding partners and donor agencies joining.