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June 18, 2018

JICA President Holds Talks With Heads of Pacific Island Countries at PALM 8

JICA President Shinichi Kitaoka held talks with the heads of 13 countries at the 8th Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting (PALM8) held in Iwaki, Fukushima prefecture, on May 18-19.

In these meetings at PALM 8, they discussed JICA's work in their countries, rolling out support measures from PALM 8, and how JICA can best provide cooperation in the future. Below are summaries of each of the meetings.

Thursday, May 17

photoAustralian Minister for International Development and the Pacific Concetta Fierravanti-Wells right, and JICA President Shinichi Kitaoka

Ahead of PALM 8, Mr. Kitaoka held talks with Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, the Australian minister for international development and the Pacific. Ms. Fierravanti-Wells and Mr. Kitaoka discussed trends in assistance to the major countries in the Pacific and the expansion of foreign private companies into the region.

Friday, May 18

On the first day of PALM8, Mr. Kitaoka held talks with Samoan Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Tuilaepa Fatialofa Lupesoali Sailele Malielegaoi, Palauan President Tommy E. Remengesau Jr., Marshallese President Hilda C. Heine, Kiribati President and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration Taneti Maamau, Fijian Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama, and Papua New Guinean Prime Minister Peter O'Neill.

Mr. Tuilaepa of Samoa told he looks forward to cooperation on ports and harbors infrastructure. Mr. Remengesau of Palau said he looks forward to the implementation of the plan proposed in the JICA survey in the field of renewable energy coming to fruition, to enhanced cooperation in the fields of agriculture and fisheries, and to inviting more Japanese private companies into his country. Ms. Heine of the Marshall Islands thanked Mr. Kitaoka for JICA's past cooperation and said she looks forward to future infrastructure assistance. Mr. Maamau of Kiribati said he looks forward to cooperation to achieve the national development plan currently being hammered out. Mr. Bainimarama of Fiji and Mr. Kitaoka discussed cooperation in the infrastructure sector. Mr. O'Neill of Papua New Guinea and Mr. Kitaoka discussed the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit to be held in Papua New Guinea in November and an ongoing infrastructure project.

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Saturday, May 19

On the second day of PALM 8, Mr. Kitaoka held talks with Nauruan President and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Baron Waqa, Micronesian President Peter Martin Christian, Vanuatu Prime Minister Charlot Salwai Tabimasmas, Tuvaluan Prime Minister and Minister of Public Utilities and Infrastructure Enele Sosene Sopoaga, Solomon Islands Prime Minister Rick Houenipwela, Niuean Acting Premier and Minister of Infrastructure Pokotoa Lalotoa Sipeli, and Tonganian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Tourism Semisi Kioa Lafu Sika.

Mr. Waqa of Nauru and Mr. Kitaoka discussed climate change countermeasures, and Mr. Waqa said he looks forward to cooperation in the infrastructure sector. Mr. Christian of Micronesia said he expects Japanese cooperation in the fields of electric power and Japanese language education. Mr. Salwai of Vanuatu thanked Mr. Kitaoka for the completion of Port Vila Lapetasi International Wharf, which was supported by a Japanese ODA loan. (Mr. Kitaoka visited the site in November 2016.) Mr. Sopoaga of Tuvalu and Mr. Kitaoka discussed global efforts to fight climate change and other topics. Mr. Houenipwela of the Solomon Islands praised the work of JICA volunteers. Mr. Sipeli of Niue and Mr. Kitaoka discussed a study abroad program and measures to fight climate change. Mr. Sika of Tonga and Mr. Kitaoka discussed expanding the fruits of Japanese cooperation in the field of disaster risk reduction to other Pacific Island countries.

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By leveraging the outcome of its PALM 8 discussions with representatives of Pacific Island countries, JICA will continue dialogue and provide comprehensive and dynamic cooperation in the Pacific.

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