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PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (May 1, 1998 - Samoa News)---A seven-member trade mission from Niue arrived in American Samoa last week for the purpose of promoting trade between the two Pacific island areas.

While on-island they paid a courtesy call to Governor Tauese Sunia to express their needs, along with the possibility of establishing and expanding trade in various areas.

The delegation was led by Niue's Minister of Finance, Economics, Justice and Tourism, Aokuso Pavihi, who was accompanied by top officials of the Niue Government, including the Head of Economic Planning, Development and Statistics and the Director of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

Minister Pavihi told Samoa News that his country is looking around the region for both import and export opportunities that will benefit both sides.

For American Samoa, Minister Pavihi said, "There are a lot of areas we are looking at right now that are of interest to us. Upon returning home we will start analyzing areas."

Minister Pavihi noted that Niue is interested in exporting its handicrafts and expanding its taro exports. "Currently, Niue's taro market has been utilized by one of your local businesses," he added.

Two months ago Radio Niue announced the first shipment of Niue taro had been exported into American Samoa to businessman J. F. Kruse.

"Very pleased," is how Minister Pavihi described the delegation's meeting with Governor Tauese Sunia and Lt. Governor Togiola Tulafono. "Things are looking positive for us."

Late last Thursday morning the delegation met with members of the Business and Professional Women of American Samoa and the Chamber of Commerce.

Later in the afternoon they visited Manuia Sa Lilo, Inc.

After these meetings Minister Pavihi said they discovered a lot of areas that are of interest to their island nation.

"We always look to our neighbors in the region for trading," Minister Pavihi explained, noting that in the past, a few barriers prevented trading within islands of the region.

However, "doors are slightly open (including American Samoa) now that enable us to trade amongst ourselves," he added. "That will be beneficial to not only Niue as a small island improving its economy, but to other islands as well."

Among the trading barriers in the Pacific that must improve, according to local businesses, is the need to develop a more effective transportation system, both sea and air.

Currently Samoa Air provides charter service to Niue on a demand basis only.

Before departing for Apia Friday afternoon, the delegation visited the BCTC-Samoa garment plant and NAPA Samoa Automotive in Tafuna.

On their last night in the territory, Governor Tauese was host at a goodwill cocktail party at the Rainmaker Hotel.

Stories from the SAMOA NEWS, American Samoa's daily newspaper, may not be republished without permission. To contact the publisher, send e-mail to

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