A special forum of Small Island Developing States has been established within the group of 79 African, Carribean and Pacific nations whose 8th summit has just concluded in Papua New Guinea.
Maritime boundaries, sustainable development and climate change were identified at the summit as key issues facing island members.
The Assistant Secretary-General of the ACP group, Viwanou Gnassounou, said the forum's creation had emphasised the vulnerability of island nations to natural disasters.
"Their resilience is much lower than the larger states, so our first aim is to recognise that they need to be given specific instruments to support their economies and to recover as quick as possible whenever they have been hit by natural disasters, can be also food security issues. But the first thing is to agree amoung ACP countries is that those countries are vulnerable countries and they have to be given special attention."
Viwanou Gnassounou says Samoa's ambassador to the European Union was made the first co-ordinator of the ACP's Small Island Developing States forum.