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High speed internet between Samoa and the world by 2013

Samoa's Deputy PM talks export development
SAMOA STATEMENT: Deputy Prime Minister Fonotoe Pieere Lauofo speaks during 13th World Export Development Forum on LDCs: Integrating SMEs into Global Value Chains, Jakarta, Indonesia. [courtesy photo]

To support the efforts of the private businesses in getting their products to potential niche markets, the government has initiated a National Broadband Highway project, which will be completed in 2013 that guarantees high-speed internet connectivity between Samoa and the whole world.

The Deputy Prime Minister, Fonotoe Pierre Lauofo represented Samoa at the 13th World Export Development Forum in Jakarta Indonesia, last week. Guided by the theme “Linking Growth Markets: New Dynamics in Global Trade,” the forum was organised by the International Trade Centre in collaboration with the Ministry of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia.

This is the first public forum organized by the International Trade Centre that Samoa has been invited to speak at. Fonotoe shared with the audience Samoa’s experience in the session “LDCs: Integrating SMEs into global value chains”.

The Deputy Prime Minister informed the forum of the policies and regulatory reforms that have been undertaken by government to attract foreign direct investment into the productive sectors of “tourism, manufacturing, agriculture, fisheries and infrastructure” for the benefit of small & medium sized enterprises (SMEs).

He referred specifically to the shift of the international dateline so that Samoa trades on the same days as its main trading partners, Australia, New Zealand and other Pacific Islands; and the ongoing privatization of state assets and public enterprises.

The Deputy Prime Minister stated national examples in the aviation sector (the merge of Polynesian Blue with Virgin Airlines) and in the telecommunication sector (SamoaTel taken over by Bluesky). In line with its five-year national development strategy “Boosting Productivity for Sustainable development”, subsector plans on these key productive sectors were developed with the intention of boosting sector performance.

To ensure private sector effectively gets access to markets, capacity building training programs, advisory services, access to finance has been made possible by programs such as Private Sector Support Facility and services provided by Small Business Enterprise Centre.

To support the efforts of the private businesses in getting their products to potential niche markets, the government has initiated a National Broadband Highway project, which will be completed in 2013 that guarantees high-speed internet connectivity between Samoa and the whole world.

To facilitate trade, the government acquired the Pacific Forum Line, which will now provide enhanced trade security through the provision of reliable and affordable shipping lines to Samoa and other key markets of the Pacific region. Fonotoe stressed the strong dialogue the government has with its private sector and highlighted the successful efforts of the Women in Business Development Inc (WIBDI) as an excellent example of engaging local suppliers at the grass root level into the global value chains.

WIBDI helps farmers meet the growing worldwide market demands for certified organic products by providing assistance to 1,150 families in 200 villages in growing a variety of agro-products (noni juice, coconut oil, dried banana) to supply to lucrative markets. The commitment shown by this organisation has enabled them to secure international cosmetic retailer “The Body Shop.”



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