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$14.3M Trade Agreement Signed

A new trade project worth FJ$14.3 million has been signed between the European Union and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat in Suva yesterday. The signing of the Strengthening Pacific Intra-Regional
28 Jan 2021 10:34
$14.3M Trade Agreement Signed
From left: Ambassador of the European Union to Fiji and the Pacific, Sujiro Seam and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretary General, Dame Taylor with the signed trade agreement in Suva on January 27, 2021.

A new trade project worth FJ$14.3 million has been signed between the European Union and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat in Suva yesterday.

The signing of the Strengthening Pacific Intra-Regional and International Trade Project (SPIRIT) was officiated by the Ambassador of the European Union to Fiji and the Pacific, Sujiro Seam and the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) Secretary General, Dame Meg Taylor.

The SPIRIT project aims to enhance the trade capacity of Fiji and 14 other Pacific countries.

In her remarks, Dame Meg highlighted the project would focus on two key objectives; to support increased intra-regional and international trade and to increase the private sector’s participation in economic integration.

“Other key activities of the programme include support on the implementation of the Pacific Economic Partnership Agreement and the Establishment of a Regional Trade Database,” she said.

“The implementation of SPIRIT will ease trade challenges faced by the Pacific countries and focus on creating opportunities to trade regionally and internationally.

“Most importantly, it will strengthen the capacities of trade departments in the region through the provision of a technical position at the subregional level in each of the three subregions in the Pacific.”

Director Programmes and Initiatives, PIFS, Zarak Khan added the implementation of the SPIRIT project would run over three and a half years.

“We will be supporting our member countries to take advantage of regional interventions that will be coming out of this arrangement,” he said.

“One example of a key project that will be coming out of this agreement is the deployment of specialist trade advisors into different subregions of the Pacific; Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia. Another important area is the implementation of the economic partnership agreement.”

He said the agreement will beengaging with the private sectors in the region so the trade capacity can be built to export under the arrangement.

“We are looking at strengthened interregional trade so we would like to increase the volume of trade among the region and also the European Union.”

The African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States benefiting from the initiative are Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Republic of Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.

 

Feedback: shreya.kumar@fijisun.com.fj



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