The Ministry of Home Affairs is pleased to advise that the Deputy Premier and Minister of Home Affairs, the Honourable Walter Roban, JP, MP, represented Bermuda overseas at international events held in New York, NY, on September 17 and 18, 2023.
On Sunday, 17 September, Minister Roban, Chair of the Blue Prosperity Leaders Forum, hosted the Blue Prosperity Leaders Forum Dinner. This event was a unique opportunity to share accomplishments with donors and investors and discuss a vision for the continued success of the Global Blue Prosperity community.
On Monday, 18 September, to mark the occasion of the 78th United Nations General Assembly session in New York City, Minister Roban participated in the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) Ocean Stewardship Coalition High-Level Ocean Meeting, followed by the Return on Ocean Investment Roundtable.
The UNGC Ocean Stewardship Coalition convenes heads of state, ocean industry CEOs, prominent researchers and the finance community to determine critical enablers for governments and the private sector to deliver sustainable ocean management and ocean-based climate solutions. The High-Level Ocean Meeting focussed on healthy oceans and sustainable ocean economies. It aimed to strengthen cooperation among government representatives, heads of UN Agencies, academia and the private sector and discuss some of the solutions in ocean-related industries. Speakers shared their views on finance, policy, and innovation and what it would take to achieve fully decarbonised shipping; sustainable deployment of 2000 GW capacity of offshore wind energy; a six-fold sustainable increase of food production from the ocean, and ocean plans for 100 per cent sustainably managed marine resources by 2050.
At this event, Minister Roban shared the importance of Bermuda's natural resources and the island's focus on putting the ocean economy at the heart of economic growth and social development. The Minister explained, "Governance is vital to providing certainty and stability and Bermuda's three pillars to successful and sustainable economic growth are:
- A robust legal framework for Environmental Protection;
- A solid regulatory foundation that supports environmental protection and critical infrastructure, including energy, telecommunications, water, sewage, and other vital components such as clean air and terrestrial areas; and,
- Creating solid partnerships with local and international organisations openly and transparently."
Later that day, Minister Roban participated in the Return on Ocean Investment Roundtable, focusing on the role of financial markets and investors in enabling a supportive, long-term investment environment to grow the sustainable ocean economy. The event identified the critical enablers to increasing a pipeline of bankable ocean investments, considering why shifting to a more sustainable ocean economy matters to investors and determining how to scale up investments.
At the event, Minister Roban shared how Bermuda is creating the legislative framework for the Governance of a privately administered fund focused on supporting developments and investments in our blue economy. The Minister explained, "This fund will be administered like any other investment fund in the private international market, including the potential for blue bonds and other financial products. This fund will support development by investing in two key categories: incubator projects and mature projects ready for investment, and be a model for other island states to follow."
Minister Roban explained, "This was an excellent opportunity to demonstrate Bermuda's sound governance and leading role in environmental initiatives, strengthen existing relationships, and develop new ones with leaders from organisations and countries worldwide."