24 May 2010

Starkist says it could grow operations in American Samoa if it got real assistance

7:02 pm on 24 May 2010

The United States based multi national food producer, StarKist, says it could maintain or increase operations in American Samoa if it received real assistance.

Up to 800 workers are to be laid off within the next six months at the Pago Pago plant, with the company saying this is needed to keep it globally competitive.

StarKist's spokesperson, Mary Sestric, says that if any real assistance materialises to the benefit of StarKist, the company could maintain or possibly increase operations in American Samoa.

She says StarKist is looking forward to working with Governor Togiola Tulafono, Congressman Faleomavaega Eni and the territorial government to prevent further reductions or the closure of StarKist's operations in American Samoa.

Ms Sestric also says the company is eager to work with a territorial government sponsored task force to create a concrete plan to reinvigorate American Samoa as a hub for the tuna industry.