10 Apr 2005

Forum Secretary General promises more consultation on Pacific Plan

5:34 am on 10 April 2005

The Pacific Islands Forum Secretary General, Greg Urwin, says the region can expect much more consultation over the Pacific Plan and that it'll be spread over years.

The Plan aims to foster inter-dependence among the 16 Forum countries, and is due to go to regional leaders in August.

Mr Urwin concedes that some say there's been too much consultation already.

But, he says this misses the point that the Plan needs to be owned by the people.

He says much work is being done to develop a system of consultation that allows grassroots views to be aired and taken notice of.

"I think a lot of people will tell you and I am involved in some projects here in Fiji which are all about developing a bottom up process. I think that a lot of people would agree that in the Pacific and elsewhere that a lot of this consultation has been too top down - we have to find the means of doing it from the other end."