Building global relationships in Pacific region

The year 2007 has been dubbed by the US as ‘The Year of the Pacific’. There are great opportunities for New Zealand but only if we take an active role and do everything practicable to build an ongoing relationship with ourPacific neighbours. Fiji, the Cooks, Vanuatu, Samoa, are still seen by many New Zealanders as […]


The year 2007 has been dubbed by the US as ‘The Year of the Pacific’. There are great opportunities for New Zealand but only if we take an active role and do everything practicable to build an ongoing relationship with ourPacific neighbours.

Fiji, the Cooks, Vanuatu, Samoa, are still seen by many New Zealanders as the most popular choice for the perfect island holiday and Kiwis rush to book package holidays to these paradise destinations right on our front doorstep.

Despite recent incidents of civil unrest in the Pacific Islands, Air New Zealand in April announced it would boost services between Auckland, Rarotonga and Los Angeles.

The Pacifi c region has long occupied a central place in New Zealand’s foreign policy. Overall, the percentage of the New Zealand population that identify themselves as being of Pacifi c ethnicity has grown rapidly over recent decades and now accounts for 6.9 percent of the total population.

Journalist Michael Field, who has been writing articles and books on the Pacifi c since 1974, believes New Zealand is seen as a "warm and accepted neighbour in Pacifi c, free of the overbearing allegations often laid against Australians".

New Zealand clearly has a commitment to strengthening relationships with the Pacifi c. The Government’s Pacifi c Access scheme, along with the traditional Samoan quota and new seasonal work programmes, will open additional opportunities for Pacifi c people.