Fijian Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka has arrived in New Zealand for a visit, including a number of scheduled formal engagements.
Rabuka will spend time in Auckland and Wellington, meeting with Prime Minister Chris Hipkins, Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta and Climate Change Minister James Shaw.
“Prime Minister Rabuka officially visited New Zealand in 1998, over 25 years ago, and we look forward to welcoming him here once again,” PM Hipkins said in a statement.
“New Zealand and Fiji have a long standing relationship, based on close cooperation in areas of mutual interest,” he added.
“While we were together in Papua New Guinea recently, it was clear Prime Minister Rabuka was highly respected and influential not just in Fiji, but also across the wider Pacific region.
“I’m looking forward to building on our discussions there, and reaffirming New Zealand’s support as a trusted friend and bilateral partner to Fiji.”
Alongside regional defence and security, climate change will be a key topic on the table.
“Both New Zealand and Fiji are not strangers to the devastating impacts of climate change, and I again want to thank Fiji for their support in our response to Cyclone Gabrielle,” PM Hipkins said.
“I’m also confident we’ll be discussing our long history of close sporting, cultural, and people-to-people links.”
Rabuka’s visit will end on Thursday. He will also visit Wellington’s Pukeahu National War Memorial Park.
He will be hosted as a Guest of Government, with a number of community events on the agenda as well.