The Pacific Games Council says inviting Australia and New Zealand to compete at next year's Pacific Games is the first step towards holding a Continental Games for the entire region.
Council members approved a proposal to invite the two countries to enter teams in taekwondo, weightlifting, sailing and rugby sevens, at Friday's Annual General Assembly in Port Moresby.
The Executive Director of the Pacific Games Council, Andrew Minogue, says all of the other regions in the world hold a continental-style event and this is a way to ensure Oceania remains relevant.
"And to get the recognition from both the International Olympic Committee and the International Federations that, in the Oceania Region, when they look to that part of the world and say what is their continental event they will all unanimously agree that it is the Pacific Games and the Pacific Games will be open to all the athletes of the region to participate in".
Andrew Minogue says next year's event is a trial and they will reassess Australia and New Zealand's involvement at the end of competition.