31 Aug 2013

Cooks leaders says regional groups good for Pacific

10:37 am on 31 August 2013

Polynesian leaders met in Auckland Friday morning for the third Polynesian Leaders Group meeting.

The chairman of the PLG and Prime Minister of the Cook Islands, Henry Puna, officially handed over the chairmanship to the French Polynesian President, Gaston Flosse.

The group agreed that the leadership would transfer on a yearly basis in alphabetical order, leaving French Polynesia the new chair and Niue to follow the year after.

Mr Puna says the group had been quiet in the past year, but not asleep.

He says sub-regionalism is a force for good in the Pacific.

"The strengthening of sub-groups can lead to a solidifying of the whole, that sub-regionalism carries a positive building block for regionalism and that the cementing of our group makes the Pacific region so much stronger."

The Cook Islands Prime Minister Henry Puna welcomed the resolution of the Melanesian Spearhead Group to build ties with the PLG.