Good Outcomes Emerging From USP-Australia HLC
The University of the South Pacific (USP) and the Government of Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) concluded a successful High Level Consultation (HLC) last week in Canberra.
This HLC with Australia is an annual bilateral event to deliberate on strategic level engagements between the two long-standing partners as well as discuss progress and challenges of the University towards implementation of its Strategic Plan.
The five-member delegation from USP, led by Professor Rajesh Chandra, Vice-Chancellor and President had fruitful discussions with senior DFAT officials on the status of the current Strategic Plan (2013 – 2018) implementation; the USP-Australia Partnership; funding and priorities for the balance of the current partnership; planning for the new partnership post March 2019; USP’s 50th Anniversary; and Australia’s commitment to stepping-up its engagement in the Pacific.
Daniel Sloper, First Assistant Secretary of DFAT’s Pacific Division, welcomed the delegation and acknowledged the University as a key strategic partner for Australia, given its role in delivering quality tertiary education and its active engagement in the Council of the Regional Organisations in the Pacific (CROP). Australia is keen to collaborate with USP to leverage the partnership to help address regional development challenges.
Professor Chandra mentioned that the strong growing relationship between the University and Australia is a crucial plank through which the USP is further able to effectively contribute towards the development of the Pacific region through quality education, research and regional engagement.
USP provided an update on the progress towards the objectives of the partnership, its achievements and key challenges faced during the implementation of a Strategic Plan. USP also clarified its process to develop its new Strategic Plan post 2018 and a new Partnership with Australia.
It was noted that while some of the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) have tracked very well, there are certain initiatives faced with challenges and the University is striving towards addressing these in the remaining period of the current SP life.
The next tripartite HLC between USP, Australia and New Zealand will be held in Suva in November 2017.
Source: Universtity of the South Pacific