The Ministry of Finance and Economic Management (MFEM) and Climate Change Cook Islands (CCCI) located in the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM),  are extremely pleased to announce that MFEM has been granted approval of approximately US$1 million from the GCF to carry out Readiness activities for a period of 24 months. MFEM was accredited to the GCF to source direct funding to support projects and programmes addressing climate change in the Cook Islands in 2018. CCCI is the National Designated Authority (NDA) to the Fund.

The Cook Islands submitted its fourth request for Readiness support earlier this year. Readiness 4 continues to build on the work of the first readiness support that focused on strengthening the NDA and GCF awareness as well as the third readiness support that focused on developing a Cook Islands Climate Change Country Programme.

The fourth Readiness request builds a strong linkage from the second Readiness support through expansion of the Country Programme to include a pipeline of concept ideas from a wide range of stakeholders whom submitted concept notes to CCCI. This request will provide support for elaborating those concept ideas into full concept notes and proposals, while at the same time the CCCI and MFEM will work to prepare a national prioritization framework that will enable the Government to market priority projects to external partners, including the GCF. This request will also focus on assisting the Bank of the Cook Islands (BCI) accreditation process, in order to enable BCI to take part in the Country Programme through an on-Lending approach. Additionally, Readiness 4 will work to assist the Cook Islands in building capacity within CCCI, MFEM as the Accredited Entity to the GCF, Executing Entities and the Private Sector.

The Green Climate Fund provides early support for readiness and preparatory activities to enhance country ownership and access to the fund. Readiness and preparatory support activities are not one-off measures, but part of an ongoing process to strengthen a country’s engagement with the Fund. The GCF focuses its Readiness support on particularly vulnerable countries, including Least Developed Countries (LDCs), Small Island Developing States (SIDS), and African States.

The Development Coordination Division of MFEM have been working tirelessly with CCCI on Readiness 4, and are happy to receive confirmation that the Readiness 4 has now been approved by the GCF to strengthen the implementation of the Country Programme and assist the Bank of the Cook Islands in becoming an Accredited Entity to the Fund.

The Cook Islands Government wish to extend their greatest appreciation and gratitude to the Green Climate Fund secretariat for continuing to support the nation in our journey.