Prime Minister, Sitiveni Rabuka has addressed the pressing challenges faced by the Pacific region, including the consequences of the war of aggression in Ukraine, which has resulted in supply chain disruptions, threats to food security, and unpredictable inflationary pressures due to over-dependence on imports such as petroleum products.
While delivering his first statement at the U.S-Pacific Islands Summit held in Washington D.C., Rabuka emphasised the urgent need for a rule-making system that safeguards common interests and minimizes risk and mistrust, particularly in the current unpredictable global environment.
Rabuka emphasised the importance of trust, solidarity, and adherence to multilateralism and the rules-based order.
He says this Summit is timely because they need to further enhance trust and solidarity among themselves for multilateralism and the rules-based order to prevail.
Rabuka articulated Fiji's commitment to the 'New Agenda for Peace' and underscored the significance of the Pacific as a 'Zone of Peace.'
He suggests that the Pacific 'Zone of Peace' should be built on these fundamental pillars: Recognising the need for mutual respect for each other's sovereignty, territorial integrity, and political independence; the need for a robust 'Dispute Resolution Mechanism'; a clear 'Arms Control and Non-Proliferation' arrangement; a well-articulated framework for environmental conservation in the spirit of the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific; and the need to enhance and nurture 'Regional Cooperation' in encouraging nations to collaborate on areas of common interest.
Prime Minister Rabuka further highlighted the importance of strengthening partnerships among nations and called for the finalisation of the "Memorandum of Commercial Cooperation," which he noted would benefit all parties involved.
He also expressed Fiji's willingness to explore preferential market access arrangements and appealed to the U.S. to reconsider the re-authorisation of the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) Scheme.
The Prime Minister affirmed Fiji's commitment to the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) and its focus on empowering women and girls in emerging country partners.
He stresses that multilateralism and the rules-based international order are essential for addressing interconnected crises and challenges and for mobilising financial resources, trade, and investment to support sustainable economic growth.
Stay tuned for the latest news on our radio stations