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Prime Minister O'Neill Congratulates PNG Climate Change Negotiators in Paris

The Prime Minister,  Peter O’Neill , has congratulated Papua New Guinea’s negotiation team who represented the national and regional interest at the now-concluded climate change talks in Paris.
The United Nations’ 21st Conference of the Parties (COP-21) on climate change began two weeks ago with statements by leaders from almost two hundred countries.
At the start of the meeting, PM O’Neill said it was clear Papua New Guinea was approaching the multilateral negations from a strong position.
“When I attended the opening of the COP-21 talks I was struck by the quality of our officials,” Prime Minister O’Neill said.
“We had a fine group of highly talented Papua New Guineans representing our nation at these climate change negotiations and they served our region well.
“Papua New Guinea’s position going into the negotiations was to seek a better deal for Pacific Island nations that are suffering from the consequences of climate change.
“I thank them for their efforts and congratulate them on the outcome of the talks.
"The Paris Declaration has received mixed reviews but for Papua New Guinea and Pacific Island nations there are mostly positive outcomes.
"We are proud to say that Papua New Guinea's positions including Pacific region initiatives have been included.
“The REDD Plus and forest conservation initiatives our delegation supported are a standalone article which I know was a very delicate negotiation.
"Loss and Damage is also a separate article that should now create the opportunity for island communities that are feeling the affects of climate change to seek the support of the international community.
“Similarly, on the separate article on finance, our team worked hard for access and alignment with national country strategies as well as support for least developed countries.
"I congratulate our Foreign Minister, Hon. Rimbink Pato, Environment Minister, Hon. John Pundari, Forestry Minister, Hon. Douglas Tomureisa and National Planning Minister, Hon. Charles Abel, and the team of officials they led at the talks.
“Our Technical Head, Ms Rensie Panda, did an outstanding job working day and night to argue Papua New Guinea’s position and we thank her for the effort that she and the team put in not only over the past three weeks, but in the lead-up to the talks.
“We also thank our diplomatic missions in Brussels, Delhi and at the United Nations, and more than a dozen officials who have delivered this outcome for our nation and the Pacific.
“Our Ministers further completed a number of bilateral meetings with other countries and relevant parties including the Swedish and Italian Governments, the Green Climate Fund and Sir Richard Branson.
“This was the largest gathering of national leaders in seventy years and negotiations were always going to be challenging, and we congratulate our team for a job well done for in interests of our country and our Pacific island community.”

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