13 Sep 2004

Leaders of Pacific Fund meet in French Polynesia

7:32 am on 13 September 2004

The French Polynesian vice-president, Jacqui Drollet, has praised the outcome of a meeting of the leaders of the Pacific Fund in Papeete after the gathering had been repeatedly cancelled.

The Fund administers French assistance to the Pacific in line with the French President Jacques Chirac's initiative announced in Tahiti last year.

The meeting brought together top administrators from throughout the French Pacific to discuss projects such as a joint French/Australian project to fight HIV/AIDS and a joint New Zealand/French plan for a public health monitoring programme.

Mr Drollet says detailed projects were reviewed for which the Fund has received more than four million US dollars from the French state.

He also said the new French Polynesian government was unable to assure the same level of contributions to the Fund that had been announced by the previous administration.