As the Pacific developing member countries (DMCs) battle multiple development challenges, progress is hampered by a significant obstruction – access to clean, reliable and affordable energy. In the Pacific region, where electricity supply remains dominated by diesel-based generation, all nations are struggling to meet their own energy security objectives, as well as their Paris Agreement commitments and Nationally Determined Contributions.

Despite the availability of cost-competitive renewable energy and the rationale for massively scaling this up, multiple systemic challenges are obstructing progress:

  • The Pacific developing member countries (DMCs) have limited borrowing and debt servicing capacity, forcing reliance on grant funding for capital intensive energy projects.
  • The energy sector in the Pacific DMCs remains heavily controlled by state-owned utilities with inherent operational inefficiencies, chronic liquidity deficits, and limited capital resources for renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.
  • Existing grant funding has not leveraged private sector participation in renewable energy development.
  • High upfront capital costs and institutional inertia limit competition and private capital mobilization.


Along with increasing understanding of the scale and nature of the challenges, the session will specifically focus on the major bottlenecks and drive action to address them. The session will provide the groundwork and imperative for the global community to work together to enable the design of transformative approaches and define a new generation of systems and business models for the new normal in the Pacific region.


The session will feature a combination of expert presentations and panel discussions highlighting:

  • Opportunities for cross-sectoral solutions and advanced technologies for harnessing the Pacific region’s vast ocean resources to address climate vulnerability, energy security, food security, fuel supply, connectivity and other challenges,
  • Policy considerations that can help energy sector utilities, governments, regulators, financial institutions, and technology providers achieve transformational change,
  • Creative financing modalities that can be employed to help governments leverage grant financing, reduce market risks and barriers, and mainstream investments for clean energy; and,
  • The need for a changed approach by development partners to bring in private sector to work together to achieve a low-carbon transformation in the challenging post-COVID economic future.
Time (Manila) Activities
10:30-10:41 a.m. Moderator introduction, scene-setting video and speech, speaker introductions
10:41-10:46 a.m. The Pacific context: Challenges and Commitments
10:46-11:06 a.m. Panel 1: Technology Solutions: Disruptive cross-sectoral innovations and applications for green growth recovery
11:06 -11:26 a.m. Panel 2: Policy, institutional and financing considerations for the low-carbon transition
11:26 - 11:33 a.m. Keynote: The role of multilateral development banks to support transformational change from fragility to resilience
11:33 - 11:53 a.m. Q&A
11:33 - 11:53 a.m. Summary and closing remarks
11:58 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Wrap up and call for action


  • Mr. Teymoor Nabili, CEO and Publisher at Tech For Impact Asia, Moderator
  • Ms. Bongraoi Arebaio – Student, Bachelor of Software Engineering (Honours) at Griffith university, Australia.
  • Mr. Abraham Simpson, Pacific Power Association; Chief Executive Officer, Nauru Utilities Corporation (retired)
  • Presentation

  • Ms. Arieta Gonelevu Rakai, Programme Officer (Lead) – SIDS Lighthouses, International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)
  • Mr. Are Gloerson, Director Asia, Ocean Sun Pte. Ltd.
  • Mr. Fraser Thompson, Co-Founder, Sun Cable
  • Ms. Lorraine Akiba, President and CEO, LHA Ventures; Commissioner, Hawaii Public Utilities (2012-2018)
  • Mr. Tadayuki Ogawa, Senior Advisor, Japan International Cooperation Agency
  • Presentation

  • Mr. Quentin Vaquette, Managing Director, ENGIE Factory Asia-Pacific
  • Ms. Monalisa Dimalanta, Chair, Philippine National Renewable Energy Board (retired); Senior Partner, PJS Law.
  • Mr. Ahmed M. Saeed, Vice President, East Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific, ADB
  • Ms. Leah C. Gutierrez, Director General, Pacific Department, ADB

Point of Contact

Cindy Cisneros Tiangco, Energy Division, PARD, ADB