Maldives spoke on behalf of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) at the closing session of the preparatory committee meeting of the UNCSD.
Ms. Thilmeeza Hussain, Deputy Permanent Representative of Republic of Maldives to United Nations, in her statement reminded the conference that the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) to take place in Brazil on 4-6 June 2012, will guide the development of countless peoples and survival of many others, especially those living in the islands.
She called for the Rio+20 process to explicitly address the needs of Small Islands Developing States (SIDS) and that the development strategies of SIDS – the Barbados Programme of Action and the Mauritius Strategy – are grounded in the outcomes of the original Rio conference in 1994.
Additionally, she emphasized the processes themselves – and the Rio+20 focus on 'green economy' in general – are not enough to completely address the needs of SIDS. Highlighting the unique relationship of the island people with the ocean; much as the forests are considered lungs of the world, she pointed out that the coral reefs are the lifeblood of the societies of SIDS and indeed of the oceans themselves and called for conservation, sustainable management, and protection of ocean resources. One of the central focuses of the Rio+20 process must therefore be a 'blue economy'.
She concluded by stressing that AOSIS looks forward to accomplishing a bold agenda in Rio that would pave the road for the survival of the smallest and the most vuln erable.
The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) also known as Rio+20 is being organized in pursuance of General Assembly Resolution 64/236 (A/RES/64/236). The Conference will take place in Brazil on 4-6 June 2012 to mark the 20th anniversary of the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), in Rio de Janeiro, and the 10th anniversary of the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg. It is envisaged as a Conference at the highest possible level, including Heads of State and Government or other representatives. The Conference will result in a focused political document.