Ambassador Shiaan participates in the UN High-Level Panel Discussion: “How to reduce tsunami economic cost losses in the tourism sector”

Ambassador Shiaan participates in the UN High-Level Panel Di ... Image 1


16 October 2018

On 16 October 2018, Ambassador of Maldives to Belgium and Head of Mission to the European Union, Mr Ahmed Shiaan, participated in the joint IOC/UNESCO and UNISDR High Level Panel Discussion to discuss policies and practices to reduce tsunami risks in countries highly dependent on tourism revenues.

The High-Level Panel Discussion took place in Paris and was organised by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO and the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) as a side event during the 205th session of the UNESCO Executive Board to commemorate the 2018 World Tsunami Awareness Day and raise awareness on the economic impacts of tsunamis.

The meeting opened with one minute’s silence in memory of the 2,000 confirmed dead and 680 officially missing in the tsunami and earthquake which struck Indonesia on September 28.

In his intervention, Mr. Ahmed Shiaan said: “We almost disappeared from the surface of the earth for a couple of seconds in 2004 and we are now working hard on having a common early warning system and a number of mitigation measures that will build safer islands and help evacuating and securing the lives of thousands of people who are living there throughout the year not only tourists.

One of those projects is the City of Hope being built on an artificial island called Hulhumale, near the capital Male and which will be able to accommodate about 130,000 people with schools, hospitals and shopping areas.”

The event was co-chaired by Ms Kirsi Madi, Director, United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) and Mr Vladimir Ryabinin, Executive Secretary of IOC and Assistant Director-General of UNESCO. Other members of the panel included: Ms Veronique Baker, Senior Disaster Risk Management Officer, Department of Risk and Disaster Management, Seychelles; Mr Teru Fukui, Member, House of Representatives, Japan; Mr George Kyritsis, Mayor of Kos, Greece; Mr Jean-Denis Petit, Head, Service Interministériel Régional des Affaires Civileset Economiques de Défense et de Protection Civile, Bouches-du-Rhône, France ; Mr Hugh Riley, Secretary General, Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO).