ABOUT 16 Pacific Island leaders have confirmed their attendance to the 2018 APEC Summit in Port Moresby.
The Post-Courier has contacted about 16 offices of the Pacific island leaders and so far have confirmed that Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji, Kiribati, FLNKS, Micronesia, Nauru, Niue, Samoa, Tonga, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia and New Caledonia are ready to travel to PNG for the 2018 APEC Summit which is in two weeks time.
Recently, PNG’s Foreign Affairs Minister Rimbink Pato announced that the Pacific countries also conveyed to him their attendance during last months Pacific Islands Forum summit in Nauru.
Mr Pato said the invitation from the PNG government to the leaders was a further step in strengthening the bonds among the island nations who constitute the “Blue Pacific” continents. He said discussions in Nauru around the Blue Pacific’s ocean protection drive, and climate change, would be advanced in November’s big APEC meeting.
Mr Pato said the Forum leaders agreed on a constructive approach to discussions on regional concerns about Indonesian-ruled West Papua and will also be discussed further at the APEC Summit.
“One that will bring positive results for all in terms of economic and social development of those living in the border region and one that would avoid the bad outcomes that would arise from policies of confrontation and conflict.”
The minister met the Interior Secretary for the United States of America, Ryan Zinke and the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Matt Matthews.
“We had a very constructive breakfast meeting which was attended by Pacific leaders,” Pato said. At the Nauru summit Mr Pato said he held bilateral meetings with leaders and ministers from a wide range of countries in addition to the membership of the Forum.
They included the US, Canada, Cuba, Israel, Japan, Norway, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.