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Home » , , , , , » Investment, gender-based violence and small island states top today’s events

Investment, gender-based violence and small island states top today’s events

Written By Voice Of Baptist Papua on September 6, 2011 | 2:12 AM

John Key and David Tua
Prime Minister John Key with former All Black Inga Tuigamala (right) and friends at the launch of the Pacific Showcase at The Cloud last night. Photo: Alex
Perrottet / PMC
Pacific Scoop:
Report – By Alex Perrottet
Preliminary events for the 42nd Pacific Islands Forum were well underway in Auckland yesterday as dignitaries arrived either to present at conferences or at least check out what was on offer at the Pacific Showcase at the Cloud last night.
While Samoan Prime Minister Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Sa’ilele Malielegaoi presented at the Lowy Institute’s Conference on the Pacific Islands and the World,Tongan Prime Minister Lord Tu’ivakano arrived in time to attend the official opening of the Pacific Showcase on Auckland’s waterfront.
Not all dignitaries are present, however, with a Parliament sittings preventing current Prime Minister Sato Kilman from attending the Engaging Fiji meeting in Fiji last week and another sitting on Wednesday delaying his arrival in New Zealand.

Foreign Minister Murray McCully encouraged visitors to make the most of the Pacific Showcase and Prime Minister John Key said Pacific tourism “has huge potential to create jobs and boost incomes”, inviting guests to observe the Pacific’s “natural competitive advantage”.
Foreign Minister Murray McCully opens the Pacific Showcase. Photo: Alex Perrottet / PMC
Earlier in the day, the Lowy Institute hosted a leadership discussion, at which Fijian human rights campaigner Shamima Ali had condemned human rights abuses and “paternalistic” Pacific leaders.
Earlier, labour migration was on the agenda and the seasonal labour scheme in New Zealand and Australia received a favourable assessment. At the Pacific Islands News Association media workshop, Emily Fabling, National Manager of the recognised seasonal employer scheme told participants there were more than 7000 beneficiaries of the scheme in New Zealand alone.
At the Lowy Institute conference, Emmanuel Narokobi, managing director of Masaliai Communications in Papua New Guinea gave attendants some idea of the explosion of internet usage in Papua New Guinea, particularly with Facebook accounts.
And at the Cloud, the Prime Minister used the occasion to announce a pilot programme of a new Public Private Partnership between the government and Carnival Australia, a cruise company, to take advantage of the rising popularity in cruises and an opportunity to boost tourism in the Pacific.
Ann Sherry AO, of Carnival Australia, had earlier spoken at the Lowy Institute conference and said she was keen on working with the government.
“Together we can get much greater leverage,” she said of the PPP.
PIF 40 years logo“Popularity has been growing for the last ten years. People thought it was going to stop, but in fact it has kept going and it will keep going.”
Sherry said the programme will initiate in Vanuatu and New Caledonia, and then Carnival will look to Fiji, Cook Islands and Tonga.
“We’re bringing more people in a month sometimes than they are getting in a year by air. And that’s a huge challenge as well as a great opportunity.”
Today there are several meetings in Auckland, including the workshop on gender and human rights jointly hosted by Amnesty International and AUT University, as well as special meetings organised by the Indonesia Human Rights Group on the plight of West Papua.
A meeting of smaller island states will also take place at Sky City this morning, as well as the Pacific Investment Summit at the Cloud, which will be opened by Foreign Minister Murray McCully and former All Black Michael Jones will be giving the keynote speech.
Alex Perrottet is contributing editor of Pacific Media Watch and chief reporter of the Pacific Media Centre’s Forum reporting team.
Tongan Prime Minister Lord Tu'ivakano with Alvin Tuala (right), Director-General of the Pacific Aviation Safety Office and the Prime Minister's special adviser 'Akau'ola (left). Photo: Alex Perrottet / PMC
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