NEWS

US Plans to Triple Funding for Pacific

The United States government has assured Pacific Island leaders of expanding the overall economic relationship with the region.
14 Jul 2022 11:41
US Plans to Triple Funding for Pacific
Forum chair and Fiji’s Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama speaking to Vice President of the United States of America Kamala Harris during the virtual meeting at the Grand Pacific Hotel on July 13, 2022. Photo: DEPTFO News

The United States government has assured Pacific Island leaders of expanding the overall economic relationship with the region.

US Vice President, Kamala Harris, while addressing leaders at the Pacific Islands Forum Leaders Meeting announced their plan to triple US funding for economic development and ocean resilience for the Pacific Islands.

“We will request from the United States Congress an increase from US$21 million (FJ$46.7 million) per year to US$60 million (FJ$133.5 million) per year for the next 10 years,” she told the leaders virtually.

“Sixty million dollars per year for the next 10 years,” she said.

 

“These funds will help strengthen climate resilience; invest in marine planning and conservation; and combat illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing; and enhance maritime security.”

Vice President Harris said the treaty was the cornerstone of the US and Pacific political and economic cooperation.

She added that she looked forward to concluding negotiations on the treaty.

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama expressed his gratitude to Vice President Harris for availing herself for the event

“Your readiness to request from US Congress, US$60 million (about FJ$133.54 million) per year for the next ten years in connection with a new Economic Assistance Agreement with the Forum Fisheries Agency is a powerful commitment,” Mr Bainimarama said.

 

“The Treaty offers the United States an unparalleled platform to strengthen its relationship with the Pacific Islands Parties; to balance its various strategic interests in the Pacific region; and broaden our cooperation across regional security, responsible fisheries management, and economic development.”

Meanwhile, the US has announced its plan to re-establish a USAID regional mission in Suva.

“We will also appoint the first- ever United States Envoy to the Pacific Islands Forum,” US Vice President Harris said.

“We will return Peace Corps volunteers to the region. And USAID is taking steps to expand its foot- print to include re-establishing a regional mission in Suva, Fiji.”

 

Feedback: inoke.rabonu@fijisun.com.fj



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