Inoke_Kubuabola_2012Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama’s mandate of providing assistance to the  Melanesian Spearhead Group secretariat on various aspects of trade, labour, regional cooperation with law enforcement agencies and climate change has been the guide to Fiji’s contribution over the past 2 years of its MSG chairmanship.

In this regard, Minister for Foreign Affairs and outgoing MSG Foreign ministers meeting chair, Ratu Inoke Kubuabola while addressing the 2013 MSG FMM currently underway in New Caledonia said that enormous achievements have been made in each of these strategic areas.

“On the political and security front, I am pleased to acknowledge that achievement has been made by our Police Commissioners in advancing the work on the Department of Peace Keeping Operations (DPKO),” Ratu Inoke said.

“This Department once fully operational, will be responsible for overseeing the Formed Police Unit, Regional Police Academy, Humanitarian and Emergency Response Coordinating Centre and Police Cooperation.”

Ratu Inoke said it was important that MSG countries collectively realise their true potential in peace keeping operations internationally.

“Our unique customs and traditions make us effective peace keepers.  We must also respond effectively in sharing information to prevent our countries against the threats of globalization and liberalization,” he said.

Other notable achievements highlighted by the outgoing FMM chair included the review of the MSG constitution in which he pointed out a number of instruments of cooperation (Custody and Maintenance of Children, Legal Enforcement of Foreign Judgments, and the MOA on Police Cooperation) that will further elevate the organization’s cooperation.

MSG Foreign ministers were also briefed on the significant progress made in fostering trade and economic cooperation.

“I am delighted that we will be considering a revised trade and economic cooperation architecture as part of the Trade Ministers Meeting Report.  It signifies the continued evolution and maturity of our trade relations,” Ratu Inoke said.

This year also marks the 25th Silver Jubilee anniversary of the founding of the MSG since its establishment in 1988.