20 Jul 2011

Pacific countries have positive approach to economic growth, says NZ Finance Minister

8:44 pm on 20 July 2011

The New Zealand finance minister, Bill English, says Pacific countries are showing a fairly positive approach to growing their economies at a ministerial meeting in Apia.

Mr English is representing this country at the three day Pacific Islands Forum Economic Ministers' meeting that has just got underway.

He says many of the countries have indicated they're now emerging from the impact of the global financial crisis.

Mr English says there's increasing focus on how to maximise their fisheries resource and New Zealand is ready to provide more assistance based on its experience with quotas.

And he says the island countries are keen to embrace renewable energy to reduce their dependence on diesel generated electricity, though it will be quite a challenge.

"Just from talking to, you know, a reasonably new generation of finance ministers they had a very good grasp of the issues and I think that there's a growing sophistication of understanding about what's required to make investments, for instance in alternative fuels, work, and what's required to make them sustainable."