Top Stories

Wed
10
Sep
admin's picture

PNG BANKS CRITICIZED FOR BEING TOO CONSERVATIVE WITH LENDING

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (September 8, 1997 - PACNEWS)--- Commercial banks in Papua New Guinea again have come under fire from the government for being too conservative with their lending policies.

The Minister for Commerce and Industry, Nakikus Konga, has urged the government to seriously consider deregulating the financial sector to allow more, customer friendly PNG financial institutions to be established.

Konga says existing banks in the country are very restrictive and some have lending guidelines that are discriminatory, especially when it comes to assisting small indigenous entrepreneurs. He pointed out that instead of banks seeking out a customer base, the customers have to go knocking on the banks' doors, often only to find that small business funding is rejected.

+ continue reading
Wed
10
Sep
admin's picture

FIJI CONFIDENT OF NEW MALAYSIA SUGAR DEAL

SUVA, Fiji (September 8, 1997 - PACNEWS)---Fiji's chances of concluding a new sugar deal with Malaysia look very bright according to Ratu Isoa Bavidi, Fiji's Ambassador to the Southeast Asian country.

Ratu Isoa, a ranking member of a trade delegation that visited Malaysia's capital of Kuala Lumpur last week, said although no formal agreement was reached, the negotiations went well. He said further talks are expected soon.

Fiji's current three-year sugar contract with Malaysia for 90,000 metric tons of sugar a year, ends this coming December.

+ continue reading
Wed
10
Sep
admin's picture

JAPAN FUNDING NEW SAMOA FERRY

APIA, Samoa (September 9, 1997 - PACNEWS)---Japan has donated $9 million to Samoa to build a new ferry, which will serve both the Samoa-American Samoa route and domestic ports.

Shipping Corporation officials in the Samoan capital of Apia say the new ferry will replace the aging Queen Salamasina, which is becoming too expensive to maintain.

Prime Minister Tofilau Eti Alesana thanked Japan for the special funding and said the gift was a sign of the Japan's continuing generosity to Samoa. Just last week the new National University of Samoa, which Japan supported in the amount of $14.2 million, opened in Apia.

The Prime Minister said the new ship, in addition to providing a weekly shipping link with Pago Pago, also will be used to ferry passengers between Samoa's main islands of Upolu and Savaii.

+ continue reading
Wed
10
Sep
admin's picture

FIJI'S PM RABUKA THANKS OPPOSITION LEADER REDDY

SUVA, Fiji (September 9, 1997 - PACNEWS)---Fiji Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka has expressed deep appreciation for opposition leader Jai Ram Reddy's initiative in going to India and briefing the Indian government about Fiji's recent constitutional developments, which restore many civil rights to Fijians of Indian ethnicity which were lost during the Rabuka-led Fiji coups of 1987.

Rabuka says he is extremely pleased with the expression of goodwill and support by Indian leaders for the people of Fiji that resulted from Reddy's trip.

Rabuka said he will be writing to his counterpart in New Delhi, Prime Minister Indar Kumar Gujral, later this week to convey Fiji's wish that both countries restore full diplomatic and economic relations.

Meanwhile, Reddy who has just returned to Suva, says he is confident that India will not oppose Fiji's re-entry into the Commonwealth.

Reddy, who met Gujral and other senior political leaders, now believes India will actively...

+ continue reading
Wed
10
Sep
admin's picture

FIJI'S AIR PACIFIC NOW SEARCHING FOR NEW CHIEF

EXECUTIVE OVERSEAS

SUVA, Fiji (September 8, 1997 - PACNEWS)---The search for Fiji's national carrier Air Pacific's new chief executive has gone overseas.

Board members plan to fly to Australia this week to interview applicants for the position Andrew Drysdale will vacate next year, the Daily Post reports.

Drysdale leaves an administrative vacuum, as he will depart before the company is able to train anyone to take his place.

A number of prominent local personalities have applied for the position but Fiji Aviation Workers Association Secretary Attar Singh says no one inside Air Pacific appears to have all the necessary qualifications for the top job.

Drysdale is leaving the airline for the chief executive position at Captain Cooks Cruises in Australia.

Air Pacific has been consistently profitable during Drysdale's tenure.

+ continue reading
Wed
10
Sep
admin's picture

SOLOMON ISLANDS OFFICIAL BOUGAINVILLE PEACE PROCESS OBSERVER

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (September 9, 1997 - PACNEWS)---The Solomon Islands will be an official observer during upcoming Bougainville peace talks.

Agreement was reached during meetings this week between new Solomon Islands Prime Minister Bartholomew Ulufa'alu and his PNG counterpart, Bill Skate, in the Papua New Guinea capital of Port Moresby.

During their talks, both Prime Ministers committed themselves to build on the progress made so far under the Burnham Declaration, which seeks, through negotiation, a peaceful resolution to the nine-year Bougainville insurrection. They agreed that the peace process on mineral-rich Bougainville Island must be approached through establishing definite time deadlines during which specific conditions must be met by all sides involved in the conflict.

Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Skate urged the Solomon Islands to quickly implement the Basic Border Agreement between the two neighboring Melanesian countries. Among other...

+ continue reading
Tue
09
Sep
admin's picture

AUSTRALIA'S PM HOWARD WILL ATTEND NEXT WEEK'S FORUM IN COOKS

CANBERRA, Australia (September 8, 1997 - PACNEWS)---Australia's Prime Minister, John Howard, says this year's South Pacific Forum is an opportunity to advance the goals of economic reform and sustainable management of the Pacific's natural resources.

Howard has confirmed that he will attend the Forum leaders'summit in the Cook Islands next week, September 17 - 19.

He said his government attaches great importance to Australia's partnership with countries in the Pacific, and he looks forward to meeting new leaders and renewing contact with past friends in the region.

There have been concerns about Howard's health since he took ill in July after returning from a visit to Britain and the United States. At that time, he was hospitalized for two weeks with pneumonia and then spent another week convalescing.

+ continue reading
Tue
09
Sep
admin's picture

SOLOMON AIRLINES CONFIDENT ABOUT FUTURE

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (September 8, 1997 - PACNEWS)---The Chairman of Solomon Airlines, Limited, Job Duddley Tausinga, has expressed strong confidence in the future of the Solomon Islands national airline.

Tausinga said the foundation for the growth of Solomon Airlines into the 21st century has now been set and "there's much progress ahead."

Tausinga made the upbeat comments while announcing a $535,000 after tax profit by the airline for the past fiscal year. This is the airline's second year of profitability in a row. He said sustaining profitability --and a fair return on investment-- depends on properly executing strategic planning.

Solomon Airlines' General Manager, Gideon Zoloveke, Junior, indicated the airline has been experiencing a boom in international passenger bookings recently as a direct result of promotional drives overseas.

+ continue reading
Tue
09
Sep
admin's picture

NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SAMOA OPENS IN APIA

APIA, Samoa (September 8, 1997 - PACNEWS)---The new National University of Samoa was opened officially Friday by Prime Minister Tofilau Eti Alesana.

During a speech at the Apia campus, Tofilau said "it was the realization of a dream of our ancestors and past leaders of Samoa."

He expressed the gratitude of the Samoan government and people to the government Japan for having built the new institution of higher learning at a cost of $14.2 million.

The Samoan government's matching contribution totaled $3.7 million.

The new campus has two lecture halls, 42 classrooms of various sizes, and a 120-seat library.

National University of Samoa officials estimate that by the end of the year 2005, it will have 1,500 full-time students, 100 full-time academic staff, and 50 part-time lecturers and tutors.

+ continue reading
Tue
09
Sep
admin's picture

FSM RANKS 91 IN WORLD SURVEY OF VOTER TURNOUT, PALAU 31

PALIKIR, Federated States of Micronesia (September 9, 1997- PIDP/CPIS)--- A worldwide study of voter turnout by the Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance shows the Federated States of Micronesia ranks 91 among 163 countries studied.

In the Pacific Islands region, the FSM is seventh among eleven nations surveyed.

The best voter turnout internationally was recorded by the Mediterranean island country of Malta, with 96.2 percent of its citizens voting in the last Maltese election.

The best record in the Pacific is held by Palau. Its voter turnout of 79.3 percent earned the western Pacific nation the 31st rank globally.

At the bottom of the list is the African country of Mali, with only a 21.1 percent voter turnout.

+ continue reading

Pages