The Cook Islands National Sustainable Development Plan (NSDP) 2011-2015 will set the scene for the 2012 Roundtable Meeting on Rarotonga this month.
The NSDP is the country’s second national plan and is the result of widespread consultations between government, civil society, private sector, academia and wider community.
Prime Minister Henry Puna said the NSDP takes the country’s development to the next level, “with eight overarching national goals that speak to a vibrant Cook Islands economy supported by good infrastructure development and energy security; resilient and sustainable communities; where our people have the opportunity to fulfil their potential; are resilient to the disasters and climate change impacts, live in a healthy environment and where our progress is underpinned by the principles of good governance, law and order.”
He said the NSDP would provide the backdrop to discussions at the Round Table Meeting (31 January 2012) and give development partners an overview of the country’s national priorities and pathways to achieve them.
“Achieving our national goals hinges on sustaining our relationships and dialogue with our development partners, as well as a concerted national effort spanning government, civil society and private sectors.”
The Prime Minister said the NSDP has provided opportunities to evaluate and discuss development outcomes, review national goals and consider new strategic options within government, the private sector, civil society and communities.
“This has been timely given the 2010 national elections, the need to incorporate new policy directions and the recent emphasis placed on strengthening linkages between the economic, social and environmental pillars of sustainable development.”
The revised national plan recognises the need to continue to strengthen the planning process. Specific actions identified include building robust sector plans and monitoring and evaluation capacity to inform the ongoing planning process.
New stakeholders on the National Sustainable Development Commission are proposed to broaden participation and dialogue on national issues. Setting up an effective and efficient monitoring system to report progress against indicators will improve accountability and the dissemination of knowledge.
Improving links between the public budget process and priorities established in the national plan is also seen as critical.
Lifting public service performance at national and island levels is expected to be a major contributor to improving delivery and development impact.
The Prime Minister said the combination of these actions is anticipated to increase the quality of advice provided to Cabinet.
“Better informed decision making will result in better development impacts. This sets the stage for the focus of the upcoming Round Table Development partners meeting.”
The NSDP further articulates objectives and strategies detailed in the full version of the draft NSDP found on: http://www.pmoffice.gov.ck/images/opm/NSDP%2011-2015.pdf