Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka has commended the partnership of the United Nations Development Programme over the years during a meeting with the UNDP Administrator & UN Under-Secretary-General Achim Steiner and Kanni Wignaraja at the UN Headquarters in New York.
The partnership, which began with the signing of the Standard Basic Assistance Agreement (SBAA) in 1971, was underscored as a testament to Fiji's enduring ties with UNDP.
Rabuka acknowledged UNDP's active role in the development of Fiji and the Pacific region, recognising UNDP's presence during his previous tenure as Fiji's Prime Minister in the late '90s.
The meeting also provided an opportunity for PM Rabuka to express gratitude for the UNDP's continued commitment to Fiji's development since its independence.
He highlighted the UNDP's significance as the largest development organization within the UN system in the Pacific, strategically positioned to influence neighbouring countries' development through regional interventions.
The Prime Minister also commended UNDP for its substantial programmatic portfolio growth in the Pacific, which has expanded from approximately US$ 200m to US$ 350m over the past five years.
Rabuka also welcomed UNDP's consideration of a high-level mission to Fiji, scheduled for October 10-14, 2023, led by Assistant Administrator/UN Assistant Secretary-General Kanni Wignaraja.
The Prime Minister also expressed his anticipation for an upcoming meeting with the new UNDP Resident Representative Tuya Altangerel and anticipated Fiji's continued role as a major hub for UNDP engagement in the Pacific.
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