US increases financial assistance to Fiji

Regional News
  • Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times

SUVA (FBC News/Pacnews) — The United States has pledged to increase its financial assistance to Fiji and 10 other regional countries in areas that needs serious attention.

Lawrence Hardy

U.S. Agency for International Development Mission Director to the Pacific Lawrence Hardy made the announcement, saying this year’s allocation will double when compared to the past few years.

The U.S government’s assistance known as the Pacific Pledge aims to improve the standard of living among other pressing issues in the region.

In total, the U.S government is committing over $100 million to the region as part of the Pacific Pledge and the Indo-Pacific vision.

Hardy also highlighted that more projects have been designed to assist Fiji on climate change adaptation strategies and frameworks.

“The USAID is working with the government of Fiji and other stakeholders to draft and implement policies to achieve the country’s adaptation goals. REDDY project is designed to increase the Pacific islands access to international sources of climate finance,” he added.

As part of their approach to the Pacific Pledge and the Pacific region, he said several other U.S government agencies are expected to provide new funding and support in the near future.

Since 2017, the U.S government has helped the region to identify and mobilize $81 million from international climate financing sources for investment in the Pacific islands including here in Fiji.

In a bid to uphold its new Pacific Pledge, the United States has more plans to implement in Fiji and ten other regional countries.

Hardy said the fisheries sector in Fiji needs serious attention.

He said they will soon begin talks with the Ministry of Fisheries and relevant authorities in an effort to address illegal activities within Fiji EEZ.

“We hope to broaden our activities to include new areas of engagement throughout the Pacific. One of those areas actually is related to fishing and illegal fishing as well as under/unreported fishing. So we work with coastal communities with their endeavor. It’s going to be a new program with new emphasis that you going to see from us in the coming months.”

Hardy said the U.S. will also consult the community, particularly in coastal areas to obtain primary information about fishing grounds