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New SIS Chair Calls For More Commitment

New SIS Chair Calls For More Commitment From Members

There has been a call for more commitment from Smaller Islands States (SIS) within the Pacific Islands Forum for the implementation of decisions they make on issues affecting their membership.

The new Chair of the SIS and Prime Minister of Niue, Hon Toke Talagi made the call when opening the 17th SIS Leaders’ Summit in Alofi, Niue this morning ahead of the 39th Pacific Forum Leaders meeting which opens later on this afternoon.

The SIS includes Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, Republic of Marshall Islands, Palau and Tuvalu.

The SIS Leaders will discuss issues including transportation, bulk procurement of fuel and pharmaceuticals, labour mobility, energy, health, development financing and meteorological services.

“Our success in addressing our common problems will continue to depend on our genuine commitments toward the implementation of agreed collective solutions. I urge all of you to consider this seriously as we continue to discuss specific issues and challenges that we face as Smaller Island States,” Premier Talagi said.

Acting Secretary General of the Forum Secretariat, Feleti Teo told the SIS Leaders that the SIS Unit and the SIS desk officers within the Forum Secretariat have been instrumental in supporting SIS address their capacity constraints in implementing the Pacific Plan initiatives.

“The Secretariat and I are committed to the long term maintenance of this Unit and will ensure it has sustainable funding to support it,” Mr Teo said.

Mr Feleti acknowledged the enormous contribution by the late Greg Urwin, Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat who passed away recently.

“Mr Urwin was very committed to the sustainable maintenance of the SIS Unit and the SIS Pacific Plan Desk Officers within the Forum Secretariat who have to date, served well the interests of the SIS,” Mr Teo said.

The SIS Leaders’ Summit observed a minute of silence at the beginning of their meeting in respect of the contribution to SIS by the late Mr Greg Urwin, Secretary General of the Forum Secretariat and the Deputy Director General of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), Mr Falani Aukoso who passed away in recent weeks.

The SIS Leaders’ meeting will be followed by a meeting of Pacific ACP Leaders before the opening of the 39th Forum Leaders’ meeting in the afternoon to be followed by a plenary session.

Forum Leaders will go on a retreat at the Matavai Resort on Wednesday and on Thursday they will hold a plenary session with the Pacific Forum Dialogue Partners.


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