8 Mar 2007

Fiji asks India for help on road to democracy

11:20 am on 8 March 2007

Fiji's is seeking assistance from the Indian government for the interim administration's roadmap to democratic rule.

Help has been sought for electoral reform, the judiciary, defence training for service personnel, and trade and economic cooperation.

Fiji's minister for external affairs and foreign trade, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, put the request to his Indian counterpart, Pranab Mukherjee, in New Delhi this week and is reported to have received a positive response.

Ratu Epeli also had talks with India's minister for tourism and culture, Ambika Soni, who agreed to strengthen co-operation in all areas of tourism and culture and to promote Fiji as a destination for Indian tourists.

A Fiji government statement has described Ratu Epeli's visit to India as a great success.

Ratu Epeli stopped for talks in New Delhi after attending a meeting of African, Caribbean and Pacific trade ministers in Brussels.