The Micronesian region will be the first in the Pacific to develop a regional gender equality framework after the endorsement by Leaders at the 25th Micronesian Islands Forum (MIF) in Pohnpei.
The recommendation was first proposed by the MIF Gender Equality Committee which was set up after the 24th MIF in 2018 to progress gender equality efforts across the North Pacific.
Leaders also committed to more intentional efforts to mainstream gender-based work into sectoral areas such as energy, maritime and agriculture.
A concerted effort to mobilise resources to effect these outcomes will also be progressed over the coming two-years.
Chair of the MIF Gender Equality Committee and the Federated States of Micronesia Assistant-Secretary for Social Affairs, H.E. Stuard Penias has championed this work with member states.
“Endorsing the development of a Micronesian Gender Equality Framework would be a strong step in the right direction. It will elevate the visibility and commitment of Micronesia to principles that we aspire to as a collective, regionally and internationally. We have come a long way, we have done a lot, we still have more to do in order to achieve gender parity. Gender equality is central to realizing our collective vision for a safe, secure, resilient, inclusive and peaceful Micronesian region.”
SPC’s Principal Strategic Lead of Pacific Women and Girls, Mereseini Rakuita has provided technical advisory support to the MIF Gender Equality Committee and congratulates the Micronesian members for their transformative action on gender equality in the 25th MIF.
“The endorsement of the Micronesian Gender Equality Framework is a strong statement by Micronesian Leaders speaking to the critical role that gender equality plays in nation building. SPC looks forward to working closely with the region in developing this piece of work over the next two years.”
The development of the Framework will include diverse and broad stakeholder engagement and consultation across the Micronesian region inclusive of communities, civil society, government, development partners and technical agencies.
The Micronesia Gender Equality Framework will be developed over the next 24-months and presented to Micronesian Leaders at the 26th Micronesia Islands Forum (MIF) in 2025.
Congratulations also to FSM Department of Health and Social Affairs under the leadership of Secretary Mr Marcus Samo for an excellent job in guiding the work of the Committee to a successful conclusion.
Background Information for media
The 25th Micronesian Islands Forum (MIF) is currently being held in Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia.
The purpose of the meeting is to reaffirm relationships and discuss and establish regional cooperation on a variety of issues that are of mutual concern to the subregion.
This annual summit brings together the six governors and three presidents of the Micronesia region, as well as policy representatives from the CNMI (Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands), Guam, Palau, the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia and its members states of Chuuk, Kosrae, Pohnpei and Yap. Nauru has been confirmed in this meeting as an official Micronesian Islands Forum Member.
- Countries represented: Republic of the Marshall Islands, Republic of Palau, Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru.
- Governors represented: Guam, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), Governors of Chuuk, Yap, Kosrae and Pohnpei (Federated States of Micronesia).
Background on MIF Gender Equality Committee
Leaders endorsed the establishment of the Gender equality committee in 2019 in Chuuk, FSM at the 23rd Micronesia Islands Forum.
The proposal to establish the committee in 2019 was proposed by the Republic of the Marshall Islands and it was recognised by MIF Leaders that this was an important to have its own committee to report progress, challenges and priorities in how to drive gender equality in meaningful ways in the North Pacific region.
Leaders have endorsed:
- The development of a Micronesian regional gender equality framework.
- To mainstream gender into sectoral work
- To mobilise resources to effect these outcomes
Role of Pacific Community (SPC) – technical advisory.
Member of SPC’s executive, Mereseini Rakuita - Principal Strategic Lead for Pacific Women and Girls, has been engaged to provide technical advisory support to the gender equality committee at the MIF. SPC will now support the development of the framework, gender mainstreaming and support Members to resource mobilise critical priority areas that will make a difference for Micronesian women.