Manx Chief Minister Asked Priorities

Celtic League News

This week world leaders come together with the United Nations (UN) and civil society organisations in Samoa to articulate small island priorities for the next 20 years.

The Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS) began on 1st September in Appia, Samoa, with representative input and investment from island states from around the world including Ireland. SIDS are low-lying coastal countries that tend to share similar sustainable development challenges, including small but growing populations, limited resources, remoteness, susceptibility to natural disasters, vulnerability to external shocks, excessive dependence on international trade and fragile environments. UN Ambassador David Donoghue, from Éire/Ireland, argued in February 2014, said that some of the priorities of the SIDS should be fiscal and physical resilience, indebtedness, ocean, marine and biodiversity conservation, land degradation, food and nutrition security, sustainable energy solutions and climate change.

2014 is the United Nations International Year of Small Island Developing States, which are, according to Ban Ki-moon “home to vibrant and distinct cultures, diversity and heritage.” It is therefore disappointing not to hear a representative voice at the SIDS from the only other island Celtic nation of Mannin/Isle of Man, alongside that of Éire/Ireland.

The General Secretary of the Celtic League, Rhisiart Tal-e-bot, has written to the Chief Minister of Mannin, Allan Bell, to ask what priorities he thinks are important for the island over the next twenty years.

13/09/14

Dear Chief Minister Allan Bell MHK

Mannin/Isle of Man: 20 Year Priority List

As you will be aware, this week has seen the beginning of the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States in Samoa, during the United Nations International Year of Small Island Developing States.

I was disappointed that the Isle of Man did not have a representative voice that fed into the conference, because I am sure that the island has many issues in common with other islands globally and could have contributed positively to the discussions, including helping to set priorities for these independent islands globally over the next twenty years. It is clear that some of the priority goals of the SIDS would also be priorities for Mannin too, such as climate change and marine conservation for instance.

I am aware that the Éire/Ireland Ambassador to the United Nations, David Donoghue, attended preliminary talks to the conference in February 2014 and contributed his recommendations as to what priorities should be considered, which included fiscal and physical resilience, indebtedness, ocean, marine and biodiversity conservation, land degradation, food and nutrition security, sustainable energy solutions and climate change.

Ambassador Donoghue’s suggestions and the occurrence of the conference in general made me wonder what priorities you would set for Mannin over the next twenty years if the constitutional status of the island remained the same and whether these priorities would be different if Mannin was to become an independent state?

I would also like to know what the Manx Government contributes to internationally in the sharing of common experiences with other island nations.

Many thanks for your consideration in this matter.

Yours sincerely
Rhisiart Tal-e-bot
General Secretary
Celtic League
gensec@celticleague.net

Link:

https://www.sids2014.org

Manx Chief Minister Asked Priorities

For comment or clarification on this news item in the first instance contact:

Rhisiart Tal-e-bot
General Secretary,
Celtic League
gensec@celticleague.net
M: 07787318666
The General Secretary will determine the appropriate branch or General Council Officer to respond to your query.
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