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Fiji business re-opening signals return to normalcy

As businesses re-open from today, Fiji authorities have cautioned that breaches of COVID safe protocols will not be tolerated. Minister for Commerce, Faiyaz Koya said this milestone in Fiji’s road to recovery cannot be compromised at any cost. “Most if not all businesses are now opening and we hope to see more Fijians return to work. We’re hoping and wishing to...

Palau ditches GRT for VAT system

Palau finally adopts a new tax regime, a Value Added Tax (VAT) system after more than 30 years using Gross Receipt Tax (GRT) system. President Surangel Whipps Jr signed the bill into law, RPPL 11-11, on Wednesday, 29 September. The new tax law, referred to as Palau Goods and Services Tax (PGST) will take effect on January 2023. “Our tax system...

Vailima Gold latest to join Samoa Breweries products

Samoa Breweries introduced its newest addition to the Vailima beer family, Vailima Gold on Saturday. Vailima Gold is a low carb, full flavour lager beer with an alcoholic strength of 4.1 percent “This beer has been months in the making and our Vailima Brewing Team have worked tirelessly to perfect its brewing processes to achieve a true low carb beer that...

We made a terrible mistake buying Maseratis vehicles, says PNG Finance Minister

The Papua New Guinea Government has admitted that the purchase of the controversial Maseratis vehicles for use by the 2018 APEC Leaders was a “terrible mistake”. Finance Minister Sir John Pundari made the admission Thursday when announcing that the 40 luxury vehicles, bought for K20 million(US$5.7 million) at K500,000(US$142,000) each would be put on the market for a “discount price”...

Fiji Political parties merge for 2022 polls

The Fiji Labour Party, Freedom Alliance and Unity Fiji will merge for the 2022 general elections. This has been confirmed by Fiji Labour Party leader Mahendra Chaudhry, Freedom Alliance Jagath Karunaratne and Unity Fiji Party leader Savenaca Narube. The three political leaders in a joint statement said work towards uniting the Opposition parties for the 2022 general elections have started. The three...

Climate action: ‘Time is running out’, UN chief tells ministers

With just one month left until the COP26 climate change conference, countries must do more to reduce emissions, finance climate action and support mitigation, UN Secretary-General António Guterres told the final official ministerial meeting in Milan, Italy, on Thursday. “I cannot emphasise enough that time is running out. Irreversible climate tipping points lie alarmingly close. Civil society is watching closely...

President Panuelo submits Freedom of Information Act to FSM Congress

President of the Federated States of Micronesia(FSM) David Panuelo, has transmitted a proposed bill, the FSM Freedom of Information Act, to the 22nd FSM Congress for its members’ review and consideration. As originally described during his inaugural address in July 2019, President Panuelo’s proposed Freedom of Information Act intends to institutionalise the disclosure of public information by establishing suitable procedures,...

Samoa Government must tackle bribery definition: MP

Samoa Member of Parliament for Faleata No.3 Ale Vena Ale has raised major concerns relating to bribery and corrupt practices during election petitions after an election. Ale Vena Ale made a suggestion that the Government should consider drawing the fine line on what is considered cultural practice and bribery during campaign periods for any election. He made the points when he...

WTO Fish talks ignore SDG14

The World Trade Organisation's (WTO) current negotiations on ending fisheries subsidies are undermining livelihoods and development for developing and least-developed countries. This was echoed by small-scale fisher groups, civil society organisations, intra-government bodies and Member country negotiators at the WTO public forum on "Catching Development: Acting Together for Sustainable Fisheries Trade", hosted by the Pacific Network on Globalisation and Handelskampanjen. “The...

Pacific keen to host a global meeting for Nuke Weapons Free zones in 2022: Forum SG Puna

Pacific Islands Forum Secretary General, Henry Puna says the Pacific is keen to host a meeting of Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zones in the Blue Pacific in 2022. SG Puna made the comment while addressing the 27th Session of the General Conference of the OPANAL and Member States for the 54th anniversary of the Treaty of Tlatelolco. “I reiterate the ongoing solidarity of the...

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Fiji’s Great Council of Chiefs to meet in May

One of the Pacific’s oldest political institutions, the Great Council of Chiefs (GCC) abolished in 2012 by former Fiji’s Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama will...

Fiji Parliament selected Standing Orders waived, President urges government to uphold rule of law

Members of Fiji Parliament can pray in their own faith and speak in their own language if they choose to. Speaker of Parliament Ratu Naiqama...

Former Fiji’s Supervisor of Election Mohammed Saneem referred to FICAC

The Fijian Elections Office (FEO)has referred Mohammed Saneem to the Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption (FICAC) for probable abuse of office and for corrupting...