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Minister Blair concludes international conference on Disaster Risk Reduction

·6 min read

BALI, Indonesia, May 27, 2022 /CNW/ - The Honourable Bill Blair, President of the Queen's Privy Council and Minister of Emergency Preparedness, just concluded a successful conference at the Seventh Session of the Global Platform on Disaster Risk Reduction (GP2022). Given the significance of emergency events since the last Global Platform in 2019, discussions focused on lessons learned from COVID-19, and the path forward on preparing for and adapting to increasing natural disasters and extreme weather events as a result of climate change.

Canada is officially advancing the Sendai Framework through the Emergency Management Strategy for Canada: Towards a Resilient 2030 which will help  improve our understanding of disaster risks, strengthen our emergency response framework, and build evidence for targeted investments in disaster risk reduction (DRR).

At the Global Platform, we highlighted the interconnected approach we're taking on climate change adaptation in Canada, including updates on the development of our first ever National Adaptation Strategy and on the National Risk Profile, which will improve preparation for disaster risks and inform planning alongside Canadian emergency management partners. Building on the theme, Moving from Risk to Resilience, we also highlighted the key investments that will improve emergency response, including through the Humanitarian Workforce Program, which will help bolster our capacity to respond to requests for federal assistance from the provinces and territories.

Central to this work is partnering with all sectors, both in Canada and around the world. We continue to pursue a collaborative and whole-of-society approach to DRR. Minister Blair raised some of the innovative ways Canada is collaborating with partners across the country, including the work through the BC-Canada Joint Committee to Address Extreme Weather and Climate Resilience following the severe flooding in British Columbia in November of last year.

Minister Blair participated in two Ministerial Roundtables as well as plenary sessions and high-level dialogues. He joined Valerie Nkamgang Bemo, Deputy Director of Emergency Response, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Dr. Mike Ryan Executive Director, WHO Health Emergencies Program, Jagar Chapagain, Secretary General, International Federation of Red Cross; Thembisile Nkadimeng, Deputy Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, South Africa; and Pratima Gurung, Himalaya and National Indigenous Disabled Women Association Nepal (NIDWAN) as a panelist in a session entitled: Learning from COVID-19: Social and Economic Recovery for All.

He also met with Major General Suharyanto, Head of Indonesia National Disaster Management Authority, where they exchanged thoughts on priorities in DRR and emergency management. This is a milestone year between the two countries, as Canada and Indonesia celebrate 70 years of bilateral relationship. We look forward to continuing our strong relationship under the newly signed Canada-Indonesia Plan of Action. This action plan includes exploring opportunities to collaborate in the areas of humanitarian assistance and disaster response.

Understanding that Southeast Asia is significantly impacted by natural disasters, Minister Blair spoke with H.E. Dato Lim Jock Hoi, Secretary-General of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), and Lee Yam Ming, Executive Director of the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance (AHA Centre), to discuss emergency management priorities in the region and how Canada's recent support of $2 million can further strengthen the AHA Centre's capacity to respond to emergencies. Canada is committed to ASEAN and its ability to promote stability and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region, as we mark 45 years of partnership this year.

Disaster risk reduction and its integral part of emergency management was a core component of discussions with the President of the United Nations General Assembly, Abdulla Shahid. The meeting with Mami Mizutori, UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction, was an opportunity to reflect on the success of the week's dialogues and reiterate Canada's commitment to moving towards global resilience. Conversations on the importance of gender equality and women's leadership in DRR planning and emergency management centered prominently in discussion with Sarah Knibbs, UN Women's Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific, and his meeting with the South African Head of Delegation, Deputy Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Thembisile Nkadimeng, was an opportunity to discuss joint priorities on disaster risk reduction and emergency management for our two countries.

Minister Blair also met with the Heads of Delegations from Australia, Bangladesh, Japan, France, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States on the margins of the conference. These conversations focused on joint priorities for disaster risk reduction and opportunities for collaboration.

As we close this year's Global Platform, it's clear that the momentum of our global efforts to move from risk to resilience is hitting its stride as we close in on the midway point of our commitments under the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. This week's meetings also represented an important opportunity to take stock of progress to date and start to plan for the future of DRR. The Government of Canada looks forward to engaging fully in the upcoming mid-term review of the Sendai Framework.

Quote

"The Global Platform on Disaster Risk Reduction provided a forum for thoughtful discussion on how we prepare for and confront emergencies around the world. It was also an opportunity to strengthen our international partnerships, discuss how to we can build resiliency in the face of increasing climate disasters, and acknowledge how different communities, including women and Indigenous Peoples, are impacted by these events, and how their experiences are invaluable as we learn to adapt and build resilience. I look forward to continuing to work with colleagues from our partner nations as we tackle these global problems, together."

- The Honourable Bill Blair, President of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Emergency Preparedness

Quick Facts

  • The Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction is a multi-stakeholder forum organized and convened by the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR). It was held from May 23 to 28, 2022, in Bali, Indonesia and co-chaired by the Government of Indonesia and UNDRR.

  • The theme of the GP2022 is "From Risk to Resilience: Towards Sustainable Development for All in a COVID-19 Transformed World."

  • With over 50 sessions planned, more than 5,000 global participants participated in the GP2022.

  • Canada officially advances the Sendai Framework through the Emergency Management Strategy for Canada: Towards a Resilient 2030 which helps to improve our understanding of disaster risks, strengthen our governance mechanisms and build evidence for targeted investments in disaster risk reduction. The work under this Strategy will help to enhance disaster preparedness to mitigate impacts and equip us for a more effective response.

  • On May 16, 2022, the Government of Canada launched public consultations on the National Adaptation Strategy. Disaster risk reduction is integral to the Strategy which will set targets, identify gaps, pinpoint needed areas for investment, and help make communities safer and better prepared to support a more stable and resilient economy.

Associated Links

SOURCE Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada

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View original content: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/May2022/27/c6521.html