Pacific News Briefs

compiled by Samoa News staff

AUMUA ANNOUNCES U.S. DOT GRANTS WORTH $500,000

Washington, D.C. — Thursday, July 27, 2017 — Congresswoman Aumua Amata is pleased to announce that the Department of Transportation has awarded Pago Pago International Airport $500,000.

“I’m glad that U.S. DOT has seen the need for improvements for the airport. I will continue my efforts in Congress to ensure that American Samoa’s transportation infrastructure is brought into the 21st Century,” Amata said.

Specifically this grant will be used for infrastructure around Pago Pago International Airport.

“I want to thank Secretary Elaine Chao and her team at U.S. DOT for awarding these funds. I also want to thank American Samoa Director of Transportation Taimalelagi Dr. Claire Poumele and her staff for obtaining this funding for our beautiful home,” concluded Amata.

[Source: Congresswoman Amata Office, Washington DC]

SAMOA REVEALS ICT PLANS

Government has assured the high level participants attending the Commonwealth Broadband Pacific Forum in Apia this week of its genuine intention to improve broadband connectivity nationally and globally.

In her opening address, Acting Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mataafa reassured the gathering that included Shola Taylor, the Secretary General of the Commonwealth Telecoms Organization, the Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of the South Pacific and Chair of the Council of Regional Pacific, (CROP) Professor Rajesh Chandra of Samoa’s genuine intentions.

 “The Samoan Government truly believes in improving broadband connectivity, nationally and globally to help drive social and economic development,” said the Deputy Prime Minister.

 “At this time the new “Tui-Samoa Submarine Cable” is being constructed and will connect Apia, Tuasivi in Savaii, to Fiji and onward to United States of America via the Southern Cross Cable Network that runs from Australia and New Zealand to the USA. Wallis and Futuna, a French territory, as well as Vanua Levu in Fiji will also get branching units off the Tui-Samoa cable.”

Fiame also touched on the Samoa Submarine Cable Company (SSCC), a public private agency, which is managing the project and will operate it when completed at the end of the year.

Elaborated the Acting Prime Minister, “SSCC are also very much involved in a few more cable projects in the pipeline including the new Manatua cable from Tahiti to Samoa with branching units to Cook Islands and Niue.

“SSCC have signed an MOU with the Southern Cross Project NEXT for a connection to Samoa, on their new cable from Australia New Zealand to the USA.

“Discussions and exchange of information is well in progress for a new cable from Samoa to Tokelau and Tuvalu.

“An offer has been made to the Government of American Samoa for connection to Tui Samoa cable, and we await their response.

“With Samoa’s plans for building a Data center, an Innovation center and a National Cyber security center at the same location of the Cable Landing station, neighboring island countries have been encourages to connect to Samoa and make use of the facilities.”

Government’s mission is for Samoa to become the Pacific Hub for Information Telecommunication Technology by the year 2020.

[Source: M.P.M.C. Press Secretary]

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