CIFIC COUNTRIES HASH OUT FISHERIES PACTS WITH EU -  November 16, 2006

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PACIFIC COUNTRIES HASH OUT FISHERIES PACTS WITH EU

SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, Nov. 15) – A multilateral Fisheries Partnership Agreement between the Pacific Forum Island Countries within the African, Caribbean and Pacific group of the European Union will not stop individual countries having bilateral agreements with the European Union.

In a statement, Deputy Secretary of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat Peter Forau said the conditions within any multilateral agreement should be better than any bilateral agreement between individual Forum Island countries and the European Union.

A joint meeting of Pacific (African Caribbean Pacific countries) Trade and Fisheries officials in Port Vila, Vanuatu, yesterday discussed the draft Legal Text for the proposed Fisheries Partnership Agreement with the European Union.

The proposed draft Fisheries Agreement is one of Economic Partnership Agreements being negotiated with the European Union.

"The draft Fisheries Partnership Agreement is aimed at maximizing the returns for the FICs from the one resource that all of them have a common interest," said Mr. Forau.

He said the proposed draft Fisheries Partnership Agreement sets out the positions as a region in a resource that is common to all of the Pacific (African Caribbean Pacific countries) countries with the aim of getting maximum benefit.

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