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Small Islands Developing States 2024

The Small Island Developing States (SIDS) program is a categorization of 38 UN Member States and 20 Non-UN Member States or Associate Members. Three geographical locations comprise SIDS: The Caribbean, The Pacific, and the Atlantic/Indian/South China Sea (AIS) regions. The combined population of all SIDS members is only 65 million, which represents less than 1% of the global population. Despite this, they face unique, and some of the most distressing challenges regarding social, economic, and environmental problems.

SIDS faces these problems due to many reasons, including its geographical location. The nations under this categorization are largely remote, which makes it difficult to accumulate resources and form partnerships with neighboring nations and states. The increased cost of transportation is associated with trade, and the lack of natural or manufactured economies does little to help the situation. They also face some of the highest tariffs, and cannot enjoy commerce on a global scale - which makes them lag considerably considering the importance of the global economy.

How Was the Small Island Developing States Program Formed?

SIDS was initially recognized as both a categorization and a program in 1992 during the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Brazil. Since 1994, there have been three separate programs, which will be outlined below.

What is the Main Goal of the Small Island Developing States Program?

For SIDS counties, much of the ocean under their control is much larger than the effective land mass, which can be as high as 28 times the amount. This means that SIDS nations' resources are primarily associated with the ocean. This means that SIDS faces major problems: the effects of global climate change efforts (or lack thereof in certain circumstances) and the lack of workforce and technology necessary to transport and harvest the ocean's resources.

Exploitation is a huge issue, as member nations cannot completely industrialize their economies, as this would hurt the biodiversity and health of the world's largest bodies of water. There are currently 3 UN Programmes of Action in Support of SIDS:

  1. In 1994, the Barbados Programme of Action was created to work on specific actions that would assist SIDS nations to achieve sustainable development. The UN conference endorsed and reaffirmed the commitments and principles to development that were embodied in Agenda 21. This has been further translated into policies, actions, and measures that will be taken at various levels - national, regional, and international.
  1. In 2005, The Mauritius Strategy was created to further implement the first program, and to further address any gaps that remained during or post-implementation.

  2. In 2014, the SAMOA pathway was created, which is an international community that gathered in Samoa for a conference on SIDS regions which helps forge new pathways for further sustainable development. This primarily recognizes that their inherent vulnerabilities lie in their remoteness, small size, and climate change impacts. This pathway is primarily focused on fostering partnerships for SIDS regions to take advantage of to mitigate the damage done to their economies.

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Country
UN Recognized
Geographic Regions
HaitiCaribbean
Dominican RepublicCaribbean
CubaCaribbean
Papua New GuineaPacific
SingaporeAtlantic, Indian Ocean and South China Sea (AIS)
JamaicaCaribbean
Guinea BissauAtlantic, Indian Ocean and South China Sea (AIS)
Trinidad and TobagoCaribbean
BahrainAtlantic, Indian Ocean and South China Sea (AIS)
Timor LestePacific
MauritiusAtlantic, Indian Ocean and South China Sea (AIS)
FijiPacific
ComorosAtlantic, Indian Ocean and South China Sea (AIS)
GuyanaCaribbean
Solomon IslandsPacific
SurinameCaribbean
Cape VerdeAtlantic, Indian Ocean and South China Sea (AIS)
MaldivesAtlantic, Indian Ocean and South China Sea (AIS)
BelizeCaribbean
BahamasCaribbean
VanuatuPacific
BarbadosCaribbean
Sao Tome and PrincipeAtlantic, Indian Ocean and South China Sea (AIS)
SamoaPacific
Saint LuciaCaribbean
KiribatiPacific
GrenadaCaribbean
MicronesiaPacific
TongaPacific
SeychellesAtlantic, Indian Ocean and South China Sea (AIS)
Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesCaribbean
Antigua and BarbudaCaribbean
DominicaCaribbean
Saint Kitts and NevisCaribbean
Marshall IslandsPacific
PalauPacific
NauruPacific
TuvaluPacific
Puerto RicoNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
GuadeloupeNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
MartiniqueNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
French PolynesiaNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
New CaledoniaNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
CuracaoNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
GuamNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
ArubaNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
United States Virgin IslandsNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
Cayman IslandsNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
BermudaNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
Turks and Caicos IslandsNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
Sint MaartenNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
American SamoaNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
British Virgin IslandsNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
Cook IslandsNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
AnguillaNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
MontserratNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
NiueNon-UN members/Associate members of regional commissions
showing: 57 rows

How many SIDS countries are there?

In total, there are 57 SIDS countries, but only 38 of those are recognized by the UN. The remaining 19 are non-un members or associate members of regional commissions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Sources