[FSM News] FSM Department of Resources & Development, States eye strategy for biofuel production throughout Federation.
February 21, 2013
This is a special news release from Fuel Lines, a newsletter from the FSM Petroleum Corporation (PetroCorp), a.k.a. Vital.
POHNPEI, FSM – A broad range of over 60 people from government, private sector, traditional leadership and civil society gathered last Saturday in Kolonia, Pohnpei to set forth on a strategic plan of action to rehabilitate the coconut sector in the Federation.
The Coconut Sector Strategy Design Team workshop was organized by the FSM Department of Resources and Development, with support from the FSM Coconut Development Authority (CDA), the FSM Office of Environment and Emergency Management (OEEM), the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) and Vital Energy.
During the workshop state and municipal representatives from Kosrae, Yap, Chuuk and Pohnpei were introduced to the internationally proven Focused Results Delivery (FRD) process for sector design. FRD is a structured, time-bound and comprehensive process promoted world-wide by the International Trade Center (ITC), a subsidiary of both the World Trade Organization and the United Nations.
A strategy for the coconut sector is a means for the national and state governments of the nation to achieve meaningful outcomes under both the National Energy and Agriculture Policies already in place in the FSM. The end strategic document expected to be developed over the next 150-180 days will be market-led, private sector-driven and government supported.
Energy and Agriculture, along with Tourism and Fisheries, are the identified long-term linchpins of the FSM economy. These four sectors are also expected to develop coherent strategies for development and domestic growth beyond 2023, a prerogative of the Mori Administration.
In late April or early May, the FSM will be hosting its 1st National Investment Symposium around the four linchpin sectors of the economy. With a draft strategy in place that identifies the key gaps in the sector, the nation will offer focused investment opportunities for development partners into the coconut industry.
At the one-day workshop, presentations were delivered by R&D Deputy Secretary Alissa Takesy, CDA GM Namio Nanpei, OEEM Director Andrew Yatilman, Vital CEO Jared Morris and Vital CFO Mathias Lawrence.
In his presentation, Morris linked the broader long-term concerns of FSM PetroCorp – parent company of Vital – to the concerns of people and their families. He noted that in the long view, Vital would need to diversify according to the goals set forth in the National Energy Policy, which is heavily weighted toward higher efficiency and renewable, locally-sourced forms of energy. Ultimately, he said, the nation simply cannot afford to continue spending over $50 million annually for fossil fuel.
Takesy, Nanpei and Yatilman expounded variously on the critical need for a multi-stakeholder process, the essentiality of public policy support and that there must be private sector – business and civil society – involvement in order to achieve and maintain social and economic sustainability over time.
One of the primary outcomes of the workshop was the designation of a Core Team, subject to review and approval by the political heads of each FSM State. The Core Team will be visiting each of the states over the next several months to hold ensuing workshops with government, private sector, traditional leaders, NGOs and farmers associations to gain the necessary input and support to the coconut sector strategy.
“This is the first time in 30 years that we have held a meeting such as this, bringing together so many people focusing only on coconut”, Rosa Namio Nanpei — GM, FSM Coconut Development Authority.