The president of the Marshall Islands says a telecommunications deal struck with Taiwan will improve communication in the outer islands.
Hilda Heine said her government recently signed an agreement with Taiwan for a $US640,000 investment to kickstart cellular connectivity via satellite broadband.
Dr Heine said the initiative, which will eventually cost about $US7 million, was a "game changer", because it would transform communications and connectivity in the private sector.
"Our geography does not only challenge us, but it also presents real opportunities for development.
"Our strategic location in the central Pacific, large ocean area, and natural resources and beauty are assets upon which we can build a better economy for our people."
Access to international markets was crucial for a "small island economy with a narrow resource base".