Suva, Fiji – 7 July 2021 – Fiji’s Department of Energy (DOE), under the Ministry of Infrastructure and Meteorological Services (MIMS), with support from the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT), and the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), today held the National Stakeholder Validation Workshop on the Draft Fiji National Energy Policy (NEP) 2021 – 2030. The virtual workshop was attended by over 50 stakeholders from the energy sector actors, government, private-sector, development organizations, NGOs and energy sector beneficiaries.
The objective of the workshop was to inform stakeholders on the outcomes of virtual stakeholder consultations held in May and any further consideration into the revised second NEP Draft. The workshop was also an opportunity to get stakeholders’ opinion on the priority actions that need to be implemented by key agencies with necessary timelines and resources to achieve the objectives of the new NEP.
In his keynote address, the Honorable Minister for Infrastructure and Meteorological Services, Mr. Jone Usamate emphasized the importance of the NEP. “The policy will set a direction in transforming and decarbonizing our economy as we commit to meeting our NDC and SDG goals and targets. Furthermore, it intends to address inadequate energy supplies and the high reliance on imported fossil fuels although the energy pathway becomes an even challenging one nowadays”.
His Excellency Mr. Jonathan Curr, High Commissioner of New Zealand to Fiji, in his opening remarks, expressed support for Fiji’s new NEP as part of New Zealand’s ongoing commitment to climate action in the Pacific. “Climate change remains the most important security and development issue facing the Pacific region today………. this is where climate change and energy policies are inexplicably intertwined. Collective actions on climate change ensure that we do not lose momentum on the transition to low carbon climate-resilient communities and economies in the Pacific”.
In May 2021, the first National Energy Policy (NEP) draft was shared with stakeholders for review and feedback. In addition, DOE and GGGI hosted a series of virtual consultations sessions with stakeholders between 29th June to 1st July 2021 to gather and discuss with stakeholders their feedback on the policy sections of the first NEP Draft, along with further points and clarifications that needed addressing in the document leading up to the Validation Workshop.
In his closing remarks, Mr. Daniel Muñoz Smith, GGGI’s Country Representative to Fiji, Tonga, Kiribati, Vanuatu noted the importance of the virtual workshop as the NEP process moved forward. “The inputs highlight the existing realities of Fiji’s energy landscape and the need to leverage critical policy tools to mobilize opportunities that strengthen Fiji’s energy security and sustainability.
Based on feedback received from stakeholders, a revised second NEP Draft is expected to be ready by the end of July 2021 and will be tabulated to the NEP Steering Committee in mid- August for validation.
The Department of Energy is expected to submit a final Draft NEP 2020-2030 for Cabinet endorsement by September 2021.