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FIJI’S BAINIMARAMA VOWS TO PROTECT CULTURE Despite development, latest technologies

By Losalini Rasoqosoqo SUVA, Fiji (FijiSUN, Oct. 27, 2011) - Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama said he would make sure that culture and traditions were preserved while Fiji moved towards infrastructure development which included obtaining the latest technologies.

This message was relayed to government officials and businessmen during the Prime Minister’s meetings in China.

Commodore Bainimarama said while Fiji strived to grow her economy and also share and develop latest technologies enjoyed by China and other international partners, he wanted to ensure that Fiji maintained and preserved its unique natural beauty, culture and traditions.

Meanwhile, during his last meeting with the Mayor of Shenzhen Municipal government Xu Qin where he was briefed on the economic growth of Shenzhen, he said Fiji needed to learn and take directions from the Shenzhen government to assist in driving Fiji economic reforms and developments in rural and urban areas.

During the meeting, there were discussions on strengthening diplomatic and trade ties between Fiji and the municipality whose economy has grown tremendously in the last 30 years.

Mr. Xu said Shenzhen earned annual export revenue of RMB 3.4 trillion [US$533 billion] which contributes 1/8 of China’s export earnings.

Shenzhen also is known as China’s new model city of which various reforms has been implemented that has seen this small fishing municipality grow in the last three decades.

Commodore Bainimarama was impressed and inspired by China’s confidence in ensuring that economical and social projects are implemented effectively at a much larger scale throughout the country.

Mr. Xu also expressed interest in developing co-operation between Shenzhen and Fiji, as some of Fiji’s marine, agriculture and mineral water exports have found their way into Shenzhen.

He further stated that given Fiji’s strategic locality and reviving economy, he is positive that Fiji has the potential to grow given its resources.

Commodore Bainimarama also invited Mr. Xu to visit Fiji for a holiday and enjoy its hospitality and beauty.

Meanwhile, his visit to China and previous meetings is a result of Fiji’s policy to maintain the Government’s Look North policy and more importantly, continuously strengthen and develop Fijis diplomatic ties and co-operation with China.

The ties between the two countries have been strengthened as result of Fiji’s expulsion from the Commonwealth, Pacific Island Forum and the continuous smart sanctions from Australia and New Zealand following the events of 2006.

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