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Fiji can become billion dollar industry again, says tourism chief

Tourism Fiji says if the booking numbers continue to come through, then the Pacific island nation is well on its way to becoming a billion-dollar industry again. Tourism Fiji has confirmed 75,000 bookings for hotels and resorts until the end of next month. Hill said there had been a 'massive increase' in hits on the Tourism Fiji website since the Pacific...

Who will pay for the damage caused by climate change?

By Isabelle Gerretsen Talking about who is responsible for climate change is a fraught debate – even more so when it comes to who ought to pay for the damage it causes. In September 2017, John Mussington was forced to evacuate his home and leave behind his animals when the small Caribbean island of Barbuda was hit by category 5 Hurricane...

Bringing the Indian and Pacific Oceans together on IUU fishing

By Anthony Bergin The issue of IUU fishing provides ample scope for Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean fishing management to collaborate and mitigate these challenges The Bay of Bengal is a hot spot for illegal, unregulated, and unreported (IUU) fishing. Unauthorised tuna longlining and transshipment takes place on the high seas in contravention of Indian Ocean Tuna Commission’s conservation measures....

Reports Sovaleni has garnered noble backing in Tonga PM race

Tongan voters will shortly find out who their new prime minister will be, with nominations closing today. There are two candidates for the MPs to vote on, possibly later this week. RNZ Pacific correspondent Kalafi Moala said in the past 24 hours the chances of caretake education minister, Siaosi Sovaleni, appear to have firmed. He said Sovaleni has gained support at the...

Low turnout at New Caledonia independence poll ‘weighs heavily’ – Forum election observers

Low voter turnout at New Caledonia's independence referendum, after a boycott by indigenous groups “weighs heavily” on the French territory's self-determination process, election observers from the Pacific Islands Forum said on Tuesday. France declared the result of Sunday's referendum showed 96.5 percent of those who voted opposed independence, compared to 57 percent in 2018 and 53 percent in 2020. However, only...

Fiji government addresses plan to rip up reef

The Fijian government has made clear it won’t approve any proposal that damages the environment following a Newsroom investigation that exposed a New Zealand-registered company’s plan to excavate 2.5 hectares of coral reef at a Fijian island group to improve surf waves. The World Wave Project proposes to dig up sections of coral reefs off the remote Qamea and Taveuni...

Tourism to help Pacific growth rebound in 2022, says ADB report

The economies of the Pacific are set to rebound in 2022, according to the latest issue of the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) Pacific Economic Monitor (PEM) launched today. While the ADB report downgraded the Pacific region’s growth forecast to -0.6 percent in 2021, the subregion is forecast to have 4.7 percent growth in 2022 as wider vaccination against the coronavirus...

First local female CEO of Solomon Telekom Company

Solomon Telekom Company Limited has confirmed the appointment of Christina Lasaqa as its new chief executive officer. Lasaqa, a Solomon Islands national from Gwou’ulu, Lau lagoon, Malaita Province is the first ever local female chief executive officer of Solomon Telekom Company Limited. Lasaqa graduated in 2017 with a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Southern Queensland, Australia. She...

New Caledonia referendum result rejected

New Caledonia's pro-independence umbrella organisation says it doesn't recognise the legitimacy and validity of the third and final referendum on independence from France. The statement by the organisation grouping seven parties and unions is the first since 96.5 percent of voters rejected independence from France. Sunday's vote was boycotted because of France's refusal to postpone it to next year to consider...

Pacific Islands Forum Ministerial Committee preliminary statement on New Caledonia referendum

The Pacific Islands Forum Ministerial Committee to New Caledonia observed the 2021 New Caledonia referendum on independence held on 12 December 2021. It deployed to the Northern and Southern Provinces and observed the referendum opening, polling, closing, and the count. “The Committee was pleased with the overall arrangements made for polling day and congratulates the people and Government of New Caledonia,...

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The 2022 Forum Economic Ministers Meeting (FEMM) was convened on 11-12 August 2022. The meeting was chaired by  Johnny Koanapo Rasou, Minister for Finance...

Relationship between Pacific countries and development partners must be watertight: Vanuatu Finance Minister

By Pita Ligaiula in Port Vila The geo-strategic competition intensifying in the Pacific region requires a reset in relationships that does not jeopardise diplomatic...

Vanuatu releases a world leading NDC to the Climate Change Paris Agreement

Vanuatu, one of the world’s most climate vulnerable countries, has today submitted one of the world’s most ambitious nationally determined contribution (NDC) commitments to...