AMERICAN SAMOA'S NEW FISHING VESSEL SOON TO BEGIN OPERATIONS

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HONOLULU, Hawaii ( October 14, 1997 - PIDP/CPIS)---The first long-line fishing boat owned and operated by American Samoa has left for Pago Pago after being outfitted in Honolulu.

The $1-million Faivaimoana will join nearly 300 other long liners operating in the South Pacific.

The vessel is a major development in American Samoa's fishing fleet, allowing it to compete with foreign long-line fishing vessels.

Luciano Giorgini, a San Francisco investor and part-owner of the new vessel, said officials at Starkist cannery in American Samoa have promised to buy the vessel's catch.

The new boat will carry a crew of five and, with a range of about 12,000 miles, will be able to stay at sea for up to two weeks.

Giorgini says he and his partner hope to build a second fishing boat.

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