19 Nov 2007

Samoa expected to change drive sides July 2008

10:45 am on 19 November 2007

Samoa's controversial right hand drive switch, which is expected to become effective in July 2008, has been approved by the cabinet.

This means the proposed legislation for the change from left to right hand drive vehicles will be tabled in parliament next month for debate.

The Minister of Works, Transport and Infrastructure, Tuisugaletaua Sofara Aveau, told a media conference that the change will cost around 2 and half million US dollars.

But despite the government move the country's Chamber of Commerce as well as all non-governmental organizations have rejected the proposal.

However the Prime Minister, Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, has reassured everyone that all left hand drive vehicles found to be in the country when the switch will come into force can still be used until they are no longer needed.

The Minister of Works, Transport and Infrastructure says training will be provided to all members of the public to make sure everyone is prepared for the change.