On February 9, the Government of the Republic of Palau hosted a handover ceremony of 1 million Grant for Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction Project. President Surangel S. Whipps, Jr., Ambassador Jessica Lee gave remarks at the ceremony. Casmir Remengesau, Director of Budget & Planning, Brian Melairei, Director of Capital Improvement Projects and Ismael Aguon, Director of Public Safety, Jefferson Eriich, Chief of Fire and Rescue, Xavier Matsutaro, Coordinator of Climate Change Office were present at the ceremony.
Ambassador Lee noted in her remarks that to support our Pacific Islands allies to adapt and mitigate the challenges posted by climate change, the people and Government of ROC (Taiwan) has set up a special fund “The Adaption and Contingency Fund for Climate Change”. On behalf of the people and Taiwan Government, she was delighted to present US1 million to fund “Palau’s Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction Project”. As Palau and Taiwan has signed the Agreement on collaboration of Disaster Risk Management last year, this fund will assist Palau to realize the objectives of Palau Climate Change Policy. She also praised that the Office of the President and Palau team have taken climate change seriously and efficiently. It sets a good model of bilateral cooperation in the region. This also serviced an example as H.E. President Whipps praised Taiwan at COP 27 that “Taiwan has committed to be part of the climate change solution and actively support other countries”.
The President expressed the deepest gratitude of the Republic of Palau to the Republic of China (Taiwan) for the swift response to Palau’s request. In his remarks, he mentioned” a friend in need is a friend indeed” and is grateful to have a partner like Taiwan that is always there to step up for Palau. In the project, the fire hydrant can put off the forest fire and prevent soil erosion, the water tanks are to assist deliver water to people’s homes and the seawall is to protect the people in Ngiwal and Melekeok. The international Community has promised to assist but the funding is limited after deducting consultant, administrative and personnel fee and not quick and efficient enough. Taiwan’s grant is a good example. It’s quick and efficient in providing support on the ground where it’s needed.
Ambassador Lee handed the 1 million check over to President Whipps. After the handover ceremony, a photo-shoot of all the participants is made.