U.S Congresswoman Uifa’atali Amata is an original cosponsor of the bipartisan Pacific Partnership Act, H.R. 7159, and is welcoming passage Tuesday in the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Ed Case, D-Hawaii, would bolster U.S engagement with the Pacific Islands region, an issue which Congresswoman Amata highlights often.

Speaking in support of the bill in committee, Congresswoman Amata emphasiAed that the U.S is a Pacific Island nation by giving her statement first in Samoan before repeating it in English.

“My home is a Pacific Island, and we are increasingly under threat — especially from China. China is increasingly investing in the Pacific Islands — building infrastructure projects just 70 miles from my home, in Independent Samoa.

“Now is the time to act! We have to show an American commitment to the Pacific — it codifies an American strategy for the Pacific Islands and codifies the Partners in the Blue Pacific Initiative to deconflict aid to the region and encourage cooperation.

“I want to thank Rep. Case for his leadership on this bill and for all the members who have showed their support for the Pacific Islands.

“Thank you and God bless,” she said.