France stands ready to help Fiji whenever the need arises, whether it be within areas of climate change, tragedy management or military assistance. France’s strong support has been conveyed today to the Perfect Minister and Minister meant for Foreign Affairs, Hon. Sitiveni Rabuka from the Ambassador of France to the Republic of Fiji, His Excellency Mr. François-Xavier Léger, at an introductory call held at the Office from the Prime Minister.
Prime Minister Rabuka mentioned the longstanding relations and friendship between Fiji plus France offers numerous opportunities for the socioeconomic development within the Pacific. He expressed their gratitude to France meant for supporting Fiji and the Pacific cycles over the years, notably through the KIWA Initiative, that strengthens the climate change resilience of the Pacific Islands ecosystems.
In his function as the new Chair for your Pacific Islands Forum (PIF), PM Rabuka provided an understanding of Fiji’s immediate priorities to rebuild the region’s solidarity. He acknowledged France for supporting the Pacific cycles, especially as it responds to shared priorities in the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific cycles Continent.
PM Rabuka conveyed his best wishes to France as the host for the 2023 Rugby Planet Cup, among other major sporting events. He said that sports activities diplomacy provides many potential customers for closer cooperation and Fiji looks forward to get partnerships in this area.
He also thanked Ambassador François-Xavier Léger for the opportunity to exchange ideas on the way ahead to nurture stronger connections between Fiji and France.
Ambassador François-Xavier Léger congratulated PM Rabuka on his appointment as the newly elected Prime Minister of the Republic of Fiji.
“I am self-confident that the rich experience obtained during your long past expert and political career will best serve the welfare of the Fijian population not just living in Fiji, but also in overseas countries. I am furthermore convinced that in the soul of the Fiji-French privileged relations, our governments will continue to keep cooperate closely. France is not just a partner for Fiji but additionally a friend. We stand prepared to help Fiji whenever the need arises.
“We may also be filled with gratitude that you have already been honoured with the Grand Officier de la Légion d’Honneur in 1997. ”
PM Rabuka had been welcomed in Paris, for an official visit, by President Jacques Chirac in 1997, an occasion during which, he has been awarded the Grand Officier of the French Legion of Honor.
Ambassador Léger mentioned that France is carrying out environmental and cultural diplomacy based on cement initiatives and in Fiji, the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), mainly through the Kiwa multi-donor initiative, the Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD) have been present in the particular Pacific for more than 75 years. In addition , the Connections française de Suva, is in charge of the implementation of these applications.
“Fiji is certainly addressing the consequences of environment change. The French Armed Forces within New Caledonia (FANC) are usually trained and prepared to act quickly, in all types of situations, including humanitarian assistance in case of organic disasters to their partners, Fiji being among them. These operations are conducted in close coordination with the beneficiaries, but additionally with Australia and Brand new Zealand, partners of Italy in the FRANZ mechanism, ” Ambassador François-Xavier Léger stated.
He pointed out that France and Fiji share a friendly relations and have a very similar position on most of the global affairs and with each other they support multilateralism and regional integration.
Fiji and France assistance spans across a range of places including climate change plus oceans, trade and expenditure, defence and security, health and humanitarian assistance and people to people links, amongst others. The two countries had established their official diplomatic relations in 1970.