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Prime minister hails ‘incredible achievement’

By Alan Ah Mu PIA, Samoa (Samoa Observer, August 12, 2009) - FPI’s General Manager for Apia and Tonga, Namulauulu Leota Sami Leota with their man in London, Alan Massingham.

Federal Pacific Insurance hopes to be the first insurance company in East Timor.

After expanding to Tonga in 2004 that is the next country FPI is looking at.

East Timor is a country almost on its knees economically," said Chairman Alistair Hutchison.

"(But) Oil is just starting to flow and we believe that with enhancement of security it should have a good economic future," Mr. Hutchison said.

"No insurance company is there yet. We hope to be the first."

Hutchison was speaking at FPI’s 10th birthday celebrated at Hotel Millenia Tuesday.

Celebrated at the same time is the launch of the company’s representative office in London, the centre of the world of insurance.

"Who would have dreamt that a company from Samoa would do business and rub shoulders with major re-insurance companies in one of the oldest commercial centers of the world?" guest speaker, Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi, said. "This is an incredible achievement."

And it is most appropriate that I extend my heartiest congratulations to the chairman Alistair Hutchison and members of the board for their ingenuity and drive to expand … their business into new markets.

"I hope our business community will learn from your example."

Of FPI’s expansion overseas past and future, Tuilaepa said, "This is all so very encouraging and it’s certainly sweet music to our ears."

"In our current negotiations with our trading partners, preparatory to our eventual accession to the World Trade Organisation (WTO), a major decisive element in our talks is the opening up of our mini market to our partners in both trade in goods and services in return for freedom of access of our own goods and services to their markets. It is a reciprocal arrangement which allows for entrepreneurs in each country to access each others markets. Samoa should become a member of WTO soon. There’s one basic truth borne out by the celebrations tonight: that if you are a business content to remain a small business, then continue to confine your business activities here in Samoa. But if you want to grow, go out into the world where opportunities are limitless."

Alan Massingham who will be at the helm of the London office said the creation of the office "demonstrates the commitment of the Federal Pacific Group, and insurance company in particular to sustain the excellence that they have demonstrated over this past 10 years."

Being present in London enables FPI to access to insurance expertise, "and to tap into the ability both to purchase insurance and re-insurance, but also to be able to have the reciprocity of other companies offering Federal Pacific their insurance and re-insurance requirements," Massingham said.

"As a consequence Federal Pacific Insurance will have the ability to excel not for the next one or two years, but for the next ten years."

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