Toily Kurbanov: Remarks at Event on Sharing the Outcome of COP 21 and its Implications in Myanmar

Dec 23, 2015

Her Excellency Dr. Daw Thet Thet Zin, Deputy Union Minister, Ministry of Environmental Conservation and Forestry;
Officials from Government Ministries and Departments
Representatives of the NGO/CSO Community
Development Partners
Ladies and Gentlemen

A very good morning and Mingalabar!

On behalf of UNDP, it is my pleasure to welcome you all to this event on “Sharing the Outcome of COP 21 and its Implications in Myanmar” – jointly organized by the Ministry of Environmental Conservation and Forestry and the United Nations. The main objective of this workshop is to share the outcome of the recently-concluded COP 21 in Paris and to discuss possibilities for Myanmar to deliver the provisions of the Agreement.

The Government of Myanmar, together with 187 other countries submitted its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) – which outlines Myanmar’s post-2020 climate actions under the Paris Agreement. Myanmar’s NDC is a testimony of the Government’s commitment to address climate change and put the country on a path toward a low-carbon, climate-resilient future. In addition, I understand the Government of Myanmar also presented its work on the draft climate change strategy and action plan. I would like to commend the Myanmar delegation to COP 21 led by His Excellency the Union Minister of Environmental Conservation and Forestry for your hard work and efforts on the above initiatives.

Climate change represents a major challenge for Myanmar as it is frequently affected by climate-induced disasters such as droughts, floods, cyclones and sea level rise. It is also rated as one of the most vulnerable countries affected by extreme weather events. With 25.6% of the population living below poverty line, climate change impacts are felt disproportionately by the poorest and most vulnerable people of Myanmar. The impact is particularly acute for women, who make up a large number of the poor communities that depend on natural resources for their livelihood. As Her Excellency just mentioned, the 2008 Cyclone Nargis and floods earlier this year remind us of the consequences of climate change that confronts Myanmar.

Myanmar’s Nationally Determined Contribution is an important signal that the Government shares a common global concern and that they are part of the solution.  It is heartening to note that the Government of Myanmar has made some bold commitments despite the fact that it is a net carbon absorbing economy. I believe these commitments will be an important contribution to Planet Earth from the Government and people of Myanmar. We commend the Government of Myanmar for making these pledges and stand ready to support the Government in expanding its climate actions in the next few years.

Ladies and Gentlemen, 2015 has been an eventful year for the World. From the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction to the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development, from the historic Sustainable Development Summit in New York to the historic Climate Conference in Paris, this has been a year in which world leaders have united to deliver hope to the world. It’s important to recognize that these agreements are all interconnected and aim towards achieving sustainable development that is climate resilient, pro-poor, and more inclusive.
Moving forward – Government and stakeholders might consider developing a common pathway towards the future envisioned in these agreements. The common pathway could embrace the elements of strong institutions, coherent national policies and effective coordination.

•    First – to effectively deliver the benefits of these new development frameworks to the people of Myanmar, the country needs strong institutions, systems, knowledge, and skills to develop and implement policies and projects that will help in achieving the goals on climate change and sustainable development.
•    Second – all of the above need to be made part of the National Comprehensive Development Plan. The need for mainstreaming environment and climate change into development came out very clearly in last week’s consultation workshop on the National Environment Policy. I am happy to note that, once updated, the policy will provide an overall framework for integrating environment and climate change in development.
•    Third - to achieve sustainable development, Myanmar will need significant financial resources to undertake mitigation and adaptation activities in the long-term, including securing resources through public, private and alternative sources. It is important to recognize that Myanmar is already spending a significant amount of domestic resources in sectors that are climate sensitive. Effective coordination of these resources can lead to bigger dividends.   

UNDP stands ready to support the government in its efforts to achieve sustainable, inclusive and climate resilient development. Through its comprehensive programme of support, UNDP will support countries in a coherent approach to advance the objectives of the post 2015 development agenda.

In conclusion, I would like to once again thank the Deputy Union Minister, Ministry of Environmental Conservation and Forestry and your team for collaborating with the United Nations in organizing this event today. I hope that the results of the workshop will provide useful inputs in charting the way forward for Myanmar’s future climate action. Let me also take this opportunity to thank all participants present here today for sparing your time to be with us.

I wish you all fruitful deliberations.

Thank You.


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