4 Aug 2004

Forum officials begin meeting in Samoa

9:44 am on 4 August 2004

The Pacific Islands Forum officials committee has begun a meeting in Samoa ahead of the summit later this week.

This may the the last time the officials discuss key issues so close to the leaders' gathering.

Earlier this year, a review of the organisation called for the officials to hold their detailed discussions of the Forum agenda talks up to three weeks before the summit.

This was proposed amid concern that a meeting too close to the summit could railroad the leaders' agenda.

The Forum's secretary general, Greg Urwin, told delegates this morning there was no time to make such a change this year.

There is also a proposal to move the officials' meeting to the Forum headquarters in Suva.