First, let me thank H.E. Ms. Lois M. Young, Permanent Representative of Belize to the UN, and the current AOSIS Chair for clearly outlining the vision of AOSIS and key priorities.
Norway and AOSIS members are small players on the global arena, but the global arena fundamentally touches our core interests, whether it is the health of the oceans or climate change.
As ocean states, we have great opportunities in the future. Although the oceans cover some 70 % of the Earth´s surface, only a tiny proportion - around 2 to 3 % - of global food production currently comes from the oceans.
We are the first to notice impacts of global warming. AOSIS members, with rising sea level and raging cyclones. And Norway, with the rapidly receding ice cap in the Arctic.
Together, we say with one and clear voice: the effects of climate change are already here.
Norway has been a proud partner to AOSIS for a number of years and we intend to continue and deepen our partnership.
We have over several years supported capacity building to AOSIS on climate change, preparations for the BBNJ negotiations and we have provided about half of the budget to the preparation of the SAMOA Pathway mid-term review.
We are also proud to partner with AOSIS members in finding good solutions for our common future, such as supporting the festival to end plastic pollution with Antigua and Barbuda.
We look forward to working with Belize in deepening our partnership with AOSIS.
We believe that climate is also a threat to peace and security.
We support the call from several SIDS to the UN to appoint a Special Representative on Climate and Security. And Norway will continue to support the ongoing efforts to include climate and security issues on the agenda of the Security Council.
Dear friends; to sum up:
Our nations – big ocean states – share many interests. That are key to our livelihoods and prosperity. Norway is a partner – and we want to strengthen the partnership with AOSIS. It is in our interest as it is yours to fight climate change, to be in the lead on adopting renewable energy, and to safeguard our oceans for future generations.