Samoa Briefs

joyetter@samoanews.com

MILESTONE IN SAMOA, DIRECT FLIGHTS FROM CHINA TO SAMOA SIGNED

Apia, SAMOA — An Air Service Agreement has been signed between the Samoa Government and the Chinese Government Monday morning regarding direct flights from Beijing, China and Faleolo International Airport. Signed by the Ambassador of China to Samoa, Wang Xuefeng and the Minister of Works, Transport and Infrastructure, Papali’itele Niko Lee Hang who stated that there are companies that have shown interest in flying the Samoa and China route and also this has opened doors for investors from China.

“And now that we have signed the agreement, we are now open for market to whoever is interested.” Papali’itele said if Chinese airlines want to start coming in now then Samoa is now opening it up for them. “It is with great honor that I extend the government of Samoa’s appreciation and gratitude to the government of the People’s Republic of China for this milestone achievement.”

He wet on to say that the Air Service Agreement (A.S.A) signifies yet another bond between the two nations in terms of further expanding Samoa’s development aviation activities. He noted that this is a milestone for the Samoa Government and it will also help boost the economy in the tourism industry. He also noted that it’s great timing given that the new airport building is “progressing really well, we need to have more airplanes to come to Samoa once our international airport is opened.”

SAMOA EXTENDS MAIN WHARF

Apia, SAMOA — Last week was the second time the Japanese government has assisted Samoa in extending and upgrading the Apia wharf. The groundbreaking of the extension of the wharf was held late last week, on the project for the enhancement of safety of Apia Port, with its main purpose — to maintain the safety of port users by the improvement of the safety for ships to/from Apia Port by the rehabilitation and improvement of wharf, yard, ancillary facilities and others in Apia Port.

Last year an Exchange of Notes promised a grant up to $3.4million equivalent to WST $82,000,000 for the purchase of products and/or services necessary for the implementation of this development.

During the ceremony, Ambassador of Japan to Samoa, H.E. Tuimaugaolaii Kazumasa Shibuta. Stated, “We can call the port a “Life Line” to sustain activity of Samoan people, especially agricultural crops, fish food, fuel etc., and of course, passengers of cruise ship has a high priority for an engine of tourism.” He noted that the project has three main components which initially is the extension of the wharf up to more than 300m for safety landing of long cruise ship, the second, rehabilitation and expansion capacity of deteriorated container yard creating more than twice capacity and the third, improvement of tugboats and navigation system.

Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi stated that this project completes in June 2018, when another 137 meters will be added to the length of the wharf, which will then be 302 meters in length. He acknowledged Japan’s assistance for the second time in extending and upgrading the Apia wharf and also assisting Samoa in other sectors.

“We have over the last 20 years witnessed the continued support of the Government of Japan to the construction and upgrading of ports, including the fishery wharf facilities, as well as improved interisland and international ferry services. The impact of Japan’s assistance to the transport sector has resonated in significant progress, in the key growth sectors of the economy, namely tourism and agriculture and fishery. We welcome the aim of the project which is to ensure that there is enhancement of the safety of the Apia Port,” Tuilaepa said.

FOURTH YEAR SAMOA’S SEABREEZE REORT RECEIVES AWARD

Apia, SAMOA — Samoa’s Tourism Authority (STA) was thrilled to hear about the success of Seabreeze Resort who has for the fourth time in a row been awarded what is considered as the ‘Oscars’ of the tourism industry, as voted by travel and tourism professionals worldwide.

In a statement issued by the STA this week, it notes the success of Seabreeze Resort. CEO of Samoa Tourism Authority, Sonja Hunter says, “We work closely with all of our properties to ensure that guests to our country experience the Samoan hospitality that is world renowned. Seabreeze Resort has been in the forefront of the hospitality renaissance in Samoa, embodying this unique hospitality and we thank them for their wonderful work and for doing Samoa very proud.” According to the statement this is the fourth consecutive year that Seabreeze Resort has been awarded this title.

“Ten years ago we had a dream to create a utopia for couples in an untouched Island paradise, our expectations are high and to be acknowledged at a worldwide level, for four years in a row, is just an amazing achievement. We are extremely proud and it means so much to our dedicated and skilled staff.  Our continuous success really is the result of their incredible efforts.”

In addition to the awards, Seabreeze Resort was also ranked 11 out of 25 for the Top 25 small hotels in the South Pacific in the 2016 TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice™ awards and 9th in the Top 25 resorts in the South Pacific for Romance in the Travellers' Choice Awards. 


SAMOA WELCOMES HIGH COMMISSIONER OF PAKISTAN

Apia, SAMOA — His Highness the Head of State, Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Efi, welcomed a delegation from Pakistan.

High Commissioner of Pakistan, H.E. Afrasiab Mehdi Hashmi presented his Letter of Credence to His Highness, early this week and the ceremony was held at the Head of State’s residence at Tuaefu. In welcoming H.E. Hashmi to Samoa, His Highness commented on the close and friendly association between Samoa and Pakistan over the years, which has guided the collaborative efforts in maintaining peace and, promoting issues of mutual importance to the development and prosperity of not only our two countries but the international community as well.

“I am also pleased to note your continuing support and pursuit of the issues that are of much importance to both our countries especially climate change and sustainable development. I am confident that during your tenure, the close relationship that presently exists between our two Governments will continue and will be further strengthened.”

H.E. Hashmi started his diplomatic career when he joined the Foreign Service of Pakistan in 1984. He was previously posted in Washington DC, Beijing, New Delhi and Bangladesh.

Recently, His Highness welcomed a delegate from the Federal Republic of Germany.

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