FA186 - 16 December 2002
Visit to the South Pacific
I will visit Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Samoa and New Zealand from
I will be accompanied by the Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign
Affairs, Chris Gallus, and a parliamentary delegation comprising
the Chair of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence
and Trade, Senator Alan Ferguson; Senator Natasha Stott Despoja;
and Members of the House of Representatives Julie Bishop, De-Anne
Kelly, Martyn Evans and Sharon Grierson.
I remain deeply concerned by the situation in Solomon Islands. I
will meet with Prime Minister Kemakeza and his Cabinet and other
national leaders to express Australia's continued willingness to
help the country deal with its problems. I will also stress the
importance of firm action by the Solomon Island Government in tackling
lawlessness and in committing to credible economic policies if the
country is to recover from its serious decline.
Vanuatu continues to face difficult economic and social challenges
and has recently experienced instability in its police force. I
will meet with Prime Minister Natapei and other national leaders
to discuss how the Vanuatu Government is addressing these challenges,
highlighting the constructive role played by Australia in supporting
Vanuatu's future development.
Samoa has pursued an effective economic reform program and I look
forward to meeting Prime Minister Tuilaepa and other national leaders
to commend Samoa as a model for reform in the region.
In New Zealand I will attend the biannual Australia New Zealand
Foreign Ministers Meeting on 20-22 December. Issues to be discussed
include next year's 20th Anniversary of the Australia New Zealand
Closer Economic Relations Trade Agreement (CER), our responses in
the aftermath of the Bali bombing and the campaign against terrorism. I
particularly value the opportunity provided by this meeting for an
exchange of views on a wide range of global, regional and bilateral
issues of mutual interest.
Media inquiries: Chris Kenny (Ministerial) +61 02 6277 7500 / Julie
McDonald (Departmental) +61 02 6261 1555
Tuesday, 21-May-2013 16:43:41 EST