5 Sep 2017

Samoa will host Secretariat of Polynesian Leaders Group

8:31 am on 5 September 2017

Samoa will host the Secretariat of the Polynesian Leaders Group.

This was endorsed at the 7th meeting of group in Apia.

Wallis and Futuna was also welcomed as the newest member of the Polynesian bloc on Monday.

Also discussed was a Samoa initiative for a new submarine cable network Manatua which would connect Samoa, Niue, Cook Islands, French Polynesia and Tonga.

French Polynesia President Edouard Fritch also floated the idea of a Polynesian airline to be owned by governments of member countries of the group.

Mr Fritch explained the concept of a Polynesian airline.

"The project is to ask all the governments concerned by this project, the Cook Islands, Samoa, French Polynesia, maybe Niue," he said.

"We have to participate because we want a Polynesian airline owned by the Polynesians, and directed by the Polynesians. I think it's important because the common point for all these islands is the tourism development."

Edouard Fritch said members needed more time to review the initiative.

Country leaders gather for the 7th meeting of the Polynesia Leaders Group in Apia, Samoa in September 2017

Polynesia Leaders Group meeting in Apia, September 2017 Photo: RNZI/Monica Miller