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PAPEÉTE, Tahiti (Tahitipresse, Aug. 31) - The Temaru government's 1st Annual Tahiti Entrepreneur Week kicked off Tuesday with the planting of the first seeds for the creation of a strategic council within the private sector to try and attract overseas investors to French Polynesia.

That was the conclusion reached by French language daily newspaper Les Nouvelles de Tahiti on Wednesday in its report on a "brainstorming" workshop on Tahiti and Her Islands' attractiveness and competitiveness.

The workshop preceded Wednesday and Thursday's seminar on "the definition or redefinition of a land's image as a key economic development factor." The Tahiti Entrepreneur Week will end on Friday with its first nine-category Tahiti Entrepreneur Awards, the winners being chosen from among 41 nominees, some of the top men and women business personalities in French Polynesia.

The idea of a strategic council is still more or less a rough idea and not on the government's front burner, Les Nouvelles reported. Instead, the Temaru government's has several development priorities for French Polynesia. They include:

The first seeds for the strategic council were planted Tuesday by French Polynesia Vice President/Tourism Minister/Finance Minister Jacqui Drollet. According to Les Nouvelles, he told the business audience gathered at the French Polynesia presidency, "I have always dreamed of having at my side a strategic council to help me in making decisions at the economic level . . . The only condition that I put on the creation of this council is that it be composed only of economic actors actually working for the land" (French Polynesia).

The private sector business representatives on the council would be chosen for their capacity to add their brainpower to the economic reflection efforts of the leaders of French Polynesia, according to Les Nouvelles.

Hinano Teanotoga, head of the government's Tahiti Invest, which organized the 1st Annual Tahiti Entrepreneur Week, told Les Nouvelles, "The idea is to prospect overseas investors for (French) Polynesia. For that, it is initially necessary to determine what we have to sell and how to sell it."

That could involve adopting special legislation and modifying regulations, among other things, in order to attract investors, she said. The strategic council's role would be to make proposals to the government to start up a long-lasting economic development, Ms. Teanotoga told Les Nouvelles.

September 1, 2006

Tahitipresse: www.tahitipresse.pf

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