30 Jan 2006

The implementation of Pacific Plan about to get under way

5:12 pm on 30 January 2006

Officials from Pacific governments are meeting in Suva this week to begin the process of implementing the Pacific Plan on greater cooperation and integration.

The Plan was accepted at last year's Forum summit in Papua New Guinea with some elements set to be put in place immediately.

Now a Pacific Plan Action Committee is being set up to focus on the best ways of achieving these goals.

Greg Urwin, the Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum, says his organisation will provide the advice and coordination for the Plan's implementation.

But he says they will be relying on help from other regional organisations, NGos and development partners.

Mr Urwin says the new Committee will provide the Forum with political oversight and guidance.

Meanwhile Forum officials are also meeting with other agencies this week to discuss plans to merge five bodies, including the Forum, to create a more effective organisation.

This was advocated in a Forum commissioned report issued last year by consultant, Tony Hughes.

He says such a body would save millions and achieve more.