21 Sep 2010

CNMI Governor optimistic about economic future despite current malaise

12:50 pm on 21 September 2010

The Governor of the Northern Marianas says the territory's economic woes could be solved by the development of light industries and the use of Pagan as a training area by the US military.

Benigno Fitial says the economy could still go from bad to worse but he is feeling optimistic about the Commonwealth's future.

Mr Fitial says the U.S. Marines have expressed a strong desire to use Pagan as an amphibious training site and if that happened the CNMI could benefit through land leases, among other things.

He said the military also remains set on having live-fire training ranges set up on Tinian.

Mr Fitial also says his Government is continuing to encourage foreign investment to take advantage of the territory's ability to export duty free to the U.S.

He also says the CNMI is committed to ensuring the Marianas Visitors Authority can implement its airline incentives programme.