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Blog posts (594 in total, 1-25 shown)

Samoa plans for smart farming incubators


The Pacific island country of Samoa plans to set up innovation incubators to encourage its citizens to build digital technologies for agriculture, its minister has said.

“We’re looking at setting up innovation incubators and training programmes that will foster and empower our people to start developing things, to start creating apps that will be applicable to this country”, Afamasaga Rico Tupa’i – Minister of Communications and Information Technology – told the Samoa Observer.

Case Study on Industrial Innovation in the Pacific Islands


The research and innovation landscape of the Pacific is extremely diverse, ranging from Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs) with limited Science, Technology &Innovation (ST&I) capacity, Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) with strong capacities, to New Zealand and Australia, which have numerous networks of research and innovation institutions.

CDF funds for agricultural development in Guyana


Guyana Wednesday signed a multi-million dollar loan with the Caribbean Development Fund (CDF) that will be used to assist more than 150 farmers in several regions as a result of improved agricultural infrastructure.

Thematic: Agriculture & Rural Development;

Pacific Economic Monitor - December 2016


For Pacific countries, developing high-value niche products for export such as coffee, vanilla, and chocolate, opens up promising economic opportunities.

Policy Shift Needed to Sustain Growth, Development in the Pacific — ADB


With average growth in the Pacific now projected at 2.7% in 2016 and 3.3% in 2017 — the lowest since the global financial and economic crisis — policies to reinvigorate and sustain economic activity need to be prioritized, according to the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) December 2016 issue of the Pacific Economic Monitor launched on December 6. “The ongoing slowdown highlights the need for continuing policy reforms to

Accolades for ginger farmer's sweet tale of success


Young  Chinese immigrant Calvin Qiu had no farming background when he started his small ginger farm at Pacific Harbour in 1997. All he had was a tremendous appetite to learn and succeed as a ginger farmer.

And about two decades later he has grown to be one of the country's biggest exporters of the much sought after spice.

As early as 2003, his enterprise, Kaiming Agro, received organic certification.

Six Samoan companies certified and recognized internationally


Samoa Association of Manufacturers and Exporters (SAME) is targeting an increase in the export of Samoan products by 2020. Since 2014, Samoa’s recorded profit for exports in general was about $27m tala.

SAME and the Government of Samoa are aiming to increase that to $100m tala in three years.

Six Samoan companies certified and recognized internationally


Samoa Association of Manufacturers and Exporters (SAME) is targeting an increase in the export of Samoan products by 2020. Since 2014, Samoa’s recorded profit for exports in general was about $27m tala.

SAME and the Government of Samoa are aiming to increase that to $100m tala in three years.

Vanuatu ready to welcome first Chinese cruise group


Vanuatu will be marking on Monday December 12th, 2016 an historical milestone for the country’s cruise tourism sector. Preparations are underway to warmly welcome the first ever Chinese cruise ship to Vanuatu, Costa Cruise Atlantica with over 2000 Chinese passengers on board.

This is a welcome addition to an already busy December Cruise Ship schedule.

Co-operation agreed on climate issues between European Union and Fiji


FIJI and the European Union will work together on key international challenges such as climate change and oceans. 

Commonwealth report urges action to protect agriculture in small states


Rising temperatures will have severe implications for crops, water and livestock in African small states if urgent measures aren’t taken, a new report has found.

The Commonwealth Secretariat’s Small States: Economic Review and Basic Statics, Volume 19 warns of the intensifying impact of climate change on the agriculture sectors in Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho and Swaziland. It also identifies strategies that could help countries address the challenge.

Agriculture is the commercially untapped jewel of Fiji - Koya


Minister for Lands and Mineral Resources Faiyaz Koya says agriculture is the commercially untapped jewel of Fiji as the sector is brimming with opportunities. Koya says that in Fiji there are acres of arable land that can either be used for commercial agro-farming or organic farming in niche markets. The Minister says the prospects are enormous and the latest sectoral investment data suggests that a number of foreign have realized this and are seizing the opportunity. He adds the government has a vision to harness Fiji’s potential in the area of organic farming given Fiji’s e

Fiji cocoa farms receive recovery assistance


A number of cocoa farms devastated by Tropical Cyclone Winston will benefit from assistance provided by the European Union and Pacific Community in an effort to to boost the productivity of the agricultural sector after the cyclone struck early this year. The assistance is being made possible through the Increasing Agriculture Commodity Trade (IACT) project TC Winston Recovery Action; a FJD4.3 million initiative funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the Pacific Community (SPC). The first recipient, Tomohito Zukoshi, co-founder of Fijiana Cocoa and Adi Chocolate bran

PIPSO launches 2016-2019 Strategic Plan and revamped Website


PIPSO launched their 2016-2019 Strategic Plan, and revamped website in Suva today.

Solomons signs MSG free trade agreement


The prime minister of Solomon Islands has signed the Melanesian Free Trade Agreement making his country the first Melanesian Spearhead Group member to do so. Only two MSG member countries need sign the agreement for it to come into effect. The sub-regional trade deal is an expansion of former agreemens between Solomon Islands, Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu. It covers trade in services, investment and labour mobility. During the signing on Friday Manasseh Sogavare said the sub-regional trade deal was one of the answers to improving the economies of Melanesian countri

Tonga ships squash to China for the first time


Tonga has sent its first ever consignment of squash to China. Squash remains the country's main agricultural export, with South Korea and Japan the traditional markets. The chief executive of the Agrculture Ministry, Viliami Manu said a critical factor is being able to service those markets in late November and early December when Tonga is able to command better prices. He said efforts to secure a market in China had been underway for a year. "Finally on this season we were planning on opening the market with 200 tonnes.

Getting into business made easier in the Solomon Islands


The Asian Development Bank says further refinement of business registrations in Solomon Islands should foster economic activity and create more jobs all over the country. The ADB's Pacific Private Sector Development Initiative, or PSDI, says applications for foreign investment licences and business name registrations can now be lodged online and processed in 24 hours thanks to an upgrade of the Solomons' business registry. The registry, which has been accepting online applications for company registrations since 2010, has now expanded so that applications for foreign investment li

EU budget support for Fiji


The budget support discussed on Monday with the Acting Prime Minister and Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum is part of the European Union's bilateral allocation of development assistance for Fiji for the period up to 2020, says Andrew Jacobs. "The total allocation is for 28 million euro ($F62.6m) and 20m euro ($F44.7m) of this is earmarked for budget support linked to the sugar and agriculture sectors.

EU looks to expand direct budget support to Fiji


The European Union is looking to expand direct budget support to Fiji through the Ministry of Economy to fund a range of collaborative development programmes. This announcement followed a meeting between Attorney‑General and Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed‑Khaiyum and an EU delegation.

Small Islands, Big Impact


Salaheddine Mezouar, president of the UN climate treaties conference COP22, says the event, which takes place in Morocco in November, will allow “the voices of the most vulnerable countries to climate change [to be] heard, in particular African countries and island states.” So we are taking this opportunity to add to those voices - by talking about what the European Investment Bank is doing on some of the islands most vulnerable to climate change, to help them adapt to climate change, and to mitigate its effects. But first, why invest in climate adaptation or mitigation measures o



“There is has huge potential of benefits that can derive from Agritourism if we could properly ensure the linkages between agriculture and the tourism sector”. The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Tourism, Trade and Industries, Joe Natuman made that statement yesterday in his opening remarks at the Vanuatu Agritourism 2016. Mr.

Strengthening links between SIDS


A platform that promotes stronger linkages between chefs and small-scale producers in Caribbean, Pacific and Indian Ocean countries was launched in the Caribbean. Chefs for Development aims to stimulate demand of local agrifood products in the domestic and hospitality sector, improving public health and reducing unsustainable food import bills in island countries. The platform was unveiled in the Cayman Islands, where the Caribbean Week of Agriculture 2016 opened last Wednesday. Chefs for Development (Chefs4Dev) is an online community which uses chefs' role as ambassadors of

WWF welcomes first ASC certified shrimp farm in Africa


Unima, leader in Madagascar’s shrimp production sector, was awarded Aquaculture Stewardship Certification (ASC) for its aquaculture farm Aqualma located in Mahajamba, the northwest coast of Madagascar. It is the first shrimp farm in Africa to receive ASC certification, an internationally recognized labeling scheme that promotes the best environmental and social aquaculture performance. WWF´s partnership with Unima to develop and implement good social and environmental practices started in 2007.

China to support Cook Islands fisheries


China has pledged a donation of equipment worth $US82,000 to support marine surveillance in the Cook Islands. Cook Island News reported a delegation from the Cook Islands was in China last week to discuss cooperation between the Guangzhou and Zhuhai government on agriculture, fisheries, culture, tourism and health. The donation will include equipment and transportation facilities. An agriculture and fishery training project was also agreed upon and will start next month. The secretary of cultural development Anthony Turua said ten representatives from the Ministry of Mar