Foreign ministers from the Group of Seven (G7) industrialized nations, gathered in the Baltic Sea resort town of Weissenhaus in northern Germany on Friday emphasized the need of strengthening anticipatory actions against hazards to reduce acute humanitarian sufferings before they fully unfold. 

On the second day of the meeting, the grouping including Germany, Canada, France, Italy, Japan, the UK, the US, and the High Representative of the European Union in a statement underlined commitment to maximizing the potential of anticipatory action to facilitate joint planning and more timely action, through improved collaboration.

The collaboration involves beyond the humanitarian system, such as leveraging efforts on, inter alia, climate change adaptation, disaster risk reduction, social protection, and capacity strengthening and participation at local, national, regional, and international levels, the statement said.

It also highlighted that the countries experiencing conflict and protracted crises are amongst the “most vulnerable” to climate change with limited capacity to absorb shocks and to develop disaster risk management structures to enable anticipatory action.

The G7 “leading donors of the humanitarian system” should increase financial resources for anticipatory action, the statement said, noting that funding must be made available on a larger scale and flexibly and predictably to build and fuel anticipatory action where appropriate. 

Action plan on COVID-19

In a separate statement, the foreign ministers endorsed an action plan on COVID-19 making sure that no one is left behind in the global vaccination campaign by putting a special focus on the “last mile” vaccination logistics and on strengthening regional production capacities in developing countries.

“G7 Foreign Ministers recognize the criticality of responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, and in parallel building global health security capacity and architecture for the future,” the statement said.

It further highlighted that the “significant gaps” remain in the global response to the current health crisis, while challenges remain to address equity in COVID-19 pandemic and future pandemic preparedness.

The G7 ministerial meeting, which was also attended by Moldova and Ukraine as guest attendees, vowed to continue to accelerate the efforts to ensure equitable and rapid global distribution of safe, effective, quality-assured, and affordable vaccines as well as access to complementary diagnostics, therapeutics, and other essential health products in line with country needs.

It recalled that the G7 has already donated 1.18 billion doses and stands ready to share additional doses, based on the needs and capacities of countries and the necessity to have a global optimal allocation of vaccines.

The statement touched upon the importance of working with governments, the COVID-19 Vaccine Delivery Partnership, and other relevant stakeholders to support 115 countries in need.

It said the sustainable local and regional vaccine production capacities should be increased through partnerships for voluntary technology transfers on mutually agreed terms and other relevant forms of support.  

Need to mobilize climate finances

Another statement issued at the end of the meeting focused on the need to mobilize climate and biodiversity finance for climate, environment, peace, and security and to support those states and regions whose stability and peace are most affected by climate- and environment-related risks.

It recalled that the G7 foreign ministers are united in the resolve to keep the goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius in reach, to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by 2030, and to reach net-zero emissions globally by mid-century.

The top G7 diplomats intended to work with partners to establish a “climate, environment, peace and security initiative.”

This group will advocate for and undertake concrete and operational actions, approaches, and solutions to help tackle climate and environmental risks for peace and stability across the world.

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