AUSTRALIA SETTING UP EXTENDED DROUGHT RELIEF PROGRAM WITH FIJI

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SUVA, Fiji Islands (October 1, 1998 - PACNEWS/Amy)---The Australian government is setting up a long-term assistance program for drought affected sugar growing areas in Fiji.

According to Australian High Commissioner Greg Urwin, the specific program to be implemented still is in the planning stage. Organizational talks -- now in progress between the Fiji government and the Australian Council for Agricultural Research -- are expected to last another two to three months.

Australia's drought assistance project already has contributed $F 250,000 ($US 147,000) for immediate relief in the affected Fiji agricultural areas.

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