Fiji has today taken delivery of its second Guardian-class Patrol Boat, the RFNS Puamau, at a handover ceremony at HMAS Stirling, Western Australia.

The Prime Minister of Fiji, Sitiveni Rabuka received the vessel on behalf of the Government of Fiji.

Fiji and Australia are Vuvale – natural partners working together to develop joint responses to emerging regional needs and priorities.

The RFNS Puamau is the second vessel delivered to Fiji, and the 19th vessel delivered under the Pacific Maritime Security Programme – Australia’s 30-year commitment of uninterrupted engagement with our Pacific partners in support of a stable, prosperous and secure region.
Minister for Defence Industry and Minister for International Development and the Pacific, Pat Conroy said: “Australia is proud to be Fiji’s security partner of choice. The delivery of the second Guardian-class Patrol Boat today is a tangible demonstration of our Vuvale Partnership

“By enhancing Fiji’s maritime security capabilities, we are more effective in tackling our shared regional challenges together,” he said.

Meanwhile, Thank you for embodying the spirit of “Vuvale” and for being good Fijians here in Australia.

This was the message conveyed by the Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka to about 200 Fijians during a diaspora gathering in Perth last night.

Expressing the nation’s gratitude, Prime Minister Rabuka commended the Fijian community for maintaining positive relations with their host country, adding that through the “Vuvale Partnership”, Fiji’s bilateral relations with Australia have continued to advance to new heights.

“Thank you for being good Fijians abroad and for assisting your families and Fiji’s economy through your individual remittance contributions,” PM Rabuka said.

“Our recovery efforts are progressing well, things are getting better at home, and we thank you for contributing positively towards the economy.”

The Prime Minister, at the same time, urged the Fijian community to be law-abiding citizens and residents of their host country.

“Observe and respect the law of the land, respect the traditional owners of the land you are living on because that is what we expect when visitors visit our land,” he remarked.

Following traditional formalities, Prime Minister Rabuka shared insights into Fiji’s current political and economic landscape, updating them on ongoing economic development initiatives and social progress.

PM Rabuka encouraged the Fijian community to actively contribute to the growth and prosperity of both nations by advancing collaboration in various fields, such as trade, education, and cultural exchange, to name just a few.

In this regard, he reiterated that Fiji was open for business and encouraged the diaspora members to explore investment opportunities back home.

The Prime Minister also took the opportunity to respond to issues and concerns raised by members of the Fijian community during the “talanoa session”, assuring them that the Coalition Government is committed to serving the people of Fiji and developing the nation further.