Climate on agenda for Samoan prime minister visit to Australia

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Supporting small island states impacted by climate change is expected to be a key issue for the Samoan prime minister during a visit to Australia.

Fiamē Naomi Mata’afa is Samoa’s seventh prime minister and the first woman to be elected to the role, taking office in 2021.

It will be the first official visit to Australia by a prime minister of Samoa since 2019.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, who is expected to meet with her on Wednesday, said Australia and Samoa were close partners with a longstanding relationship underpinned by mutual respect and trust.

“Our countries enjoy strong personal links with nearly 98,000 people of Samoan descent calling Australia home,” he said.

“I look forward to welcoming Prime Minister Fiamē to Australia and strengthening our cooperation in areas including economic development, labour mobility, climate and regional security.”

Samoa is preparing to host the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in October 2024.

During a recent visit to London, the Samoan leader spoke at a panel discussion organised by the Australian High Commission on the need to push for more ambitious climate action and address the needs of small island states.

She is due to address a Lowy Institute event in Canberra on Monday night.

SOURCE: AAP/PACNEWS