20 Feb 2004

NZ Foreign Minister welcomes Samoa's acceptance to host PI Forum

8:37 am on 20 February 2004

The New Zealand Minister for Foreign Affairs, Phil Goff, says New Zealand is more than happy that Samoa has picked up the opportunity to host this year's Pacific Island Leaders Forum.

Niue was to have hosted the Forum, but Mr Goff says after Tropical Cyclone devastated the tiny island last month, the people there have more important and immediate things to deal with.

Meanwhile, he says there's been a full review of the Forum, and that theme will rate high on the agenda at the August meeting.

"We're 16 relatively small countries in the world over a very wide space of ocean. What we have really got to do is work together closely, use our resources together to get the best results for all our people. I think that will be a big theme at the Forum in Apia this year."