Partnership growing from strength to strength

An important signing between the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) heralds the beginning of a strengthened relationship between the two agencies to deliver on waste management priorities for the Pacific region.

On 25 August, 2016 at SPREP's Apia headquarters, representatives from both agencies formally signed the Meeting Minutes related to the formulation of the second phase of the Japanese Technical Cooperation Project for Promotion of Regional Initiative on Solid Waste Management in Pacific Island Countries, known as J-PRISM II.

At the signing, Mr Satoshi Shigiya, Deputy Director General of the Global Environment Department at JICA, talked about JICA's long history of working towards the improved management of waste in the Pacific region, notably through the first phase of J-PRISM which operated from 2011-2016:

"J-PRISM provided a variety of opportunities to Pacific counterparts through the development of a regional mutual learning framework of Pacific to Pacific cooperation for sustainable solid waste management. In collaboration with SPREP and other donors, J-PRISM II will strengthen this framework through close alignment with Cleaner Pacific 2025, and improved systematic approaches to sustainable waste management in the Pacific."

The formulation of J-PRISM II involved more than 200 interviews with key project stakeholders across the region. This process, which also involved surveys across all Pacific island countries, has ensured that the J-PRISM II project design reflects the needs of Pacific island countries.

JPRISM Signing web
Pictured above: Mr Kosi Latu (SPREP) and Mr Satoshi Shigiya (JICA) at the signing of the J-PRISM II Meeting Minutes. Photo: L.Moananu/SPREP

The regional activity of J-PRISM II will have four main components, all of which are aligned with the Cleaner Pacific 2025 (Pacific Regional Waste and Pollution Management Strategy) as well as the outcomes of the Clean Pacific Roundtable held in July 2016 in Suva, Fiji. The key regional areas of focus are capacity development, disaster waste management, strengthening of regional recycling networks and the development of a monitoring and evaluation framework for Cleaner Pacific 2025.

SPREP's Director General, Mr Kosi Latu, noted the value and strength of the proposed approach which will harmonise with key donors to facilitate and foster Pacific to Pacific cooperation:

"JICA and SPREP have enjoyed a close working relationship for many years now, especially with the location of J-PRISM staff within the Waste Management and Pollution Control Division at SPREP. We are very pleased that through J-PRISM II we will be strengthening this relationship even further. These Meeting Minutes reflect an aligned, programmatic, approach which harmonises with other key donors who are also working towards sustainable waste management in the Pacific."

J-PRISM II will be formally launched at a side event of the Twenty-seventh SPREP Meeting in Niue on 19 September, 2016. At the event, all nine participating countries as well as JICA and SPREP will sign the J-PRISM II Regional Cooperation Framework.

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