NAURU AND KIRIBATI PRESIDENTS MEETING OVER SHIPPING

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TARAWA, Kiribati (March 23, 1999 - PACNEWS)---The Presidents of Nauru and Kiribati will hold talks this week to decide whether the island nation of Nauru can be included in a shipping service which now operates between Australia and Kiribati.

The Nauru Government requested the meeting with Kiribati President Teburoro Tito, who left his capital, Tarawa, today to confer with Nauru President Bernard Dowiyogo.

The meeting will explore ways of providing roundtrip container service from Tarawa to Nauru and Australia.

Economic difficulties in Nauru have resulted in a decline in foreign shipping services calling on the Micronesian nation, and Nauru's own shipping line operates a service to Australia only once a month.

A Kiribati Ministry of Transport official said there is interest in establishing a regular shipping service with Nauru because it would increase trade between the two central Pacific countries.

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