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Director General explores the Pacific’s future

Director General explores the Pacific’s future


The issues of free trade, poverty, climate change and governance in the Pacific will be explored at this year’s Macmillan Brown Centre for Pacific Studies Lecture.

Dr Colin Tukuitonga, Director General of the Pacific Community (an international development organisation), will speak on the future of the Pacific at the University of Canterbury on 20 October.

The free public lecture will focus on some of the political, social, economic and environmental challenges facing the Pacific region in this era of globalisation and geo-political shifts in Oceania. Dr Tukuitonga will also look at the future of the Pacific, now faced with climate change-induced calamities, such as rising sea levels.

Director of the University of Canterbury’s Macmillan Brown Centre for Pacific Studies, Professor Steven Ratuva says this year’s lecture is an opportunity to find out more about the future of the Pacific, including New Zealand.

“Pacific regionalism presents significant opportunities and challenges. Dr Tukuitonga will discuss ideas on how regionalism can be appropriately defined and articulated and how a new reconfiguration can impact on the future of Pacific countries, including New Zealand,” Prof Ratuva says.

Dr Tukuitonga will examine some of the challenges facing a fast-changing Pacific and the role New Zealand can play.

As the former Chief Executive of the Ministry of Pacific Island Affairs, former Associate Professor in Public Health at the University of Auckland and former Director of Public Health at New Zealand’s Ministry of Health, Dr Tukuitonga has a wealth of knowledge about the issues confronting the Pacific. He now heads the Pacific Community (formerly known as the Secretariat of the Pacific Community), a regional organisation with a membership that includes 22 Pacific island countries and four founding members: New Zealand, Australia, the United States and France.

(This free public lecture was originally scheduled to be held last year but was postponed due to unforeseen circumstances.)

The future of Pacific regionalism: Challenges and prospects’ will be held in the A1 Lecture Theatre at the University of Canterbury’s Ilam campus at 5pm on Thursday 20 October.

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