RELEASE: Peer learning exchange program to boost cooperation and trade opportunities

Programme participant from Fiji

Thursday 13 October 2022, PIF Suva– Seven private sector representatives from the Pacific will be making their way to Port Louis, Mauritius as a part of the Pacific Islands Forum-Business Mauritius (PIF-BM) Joint Cooperation Framework Peer Learning Exchange Program.

The Peer Learning Exchange Program will take place from 17 to 21 October 2022 in Mauritius. It looks at building South to South cooperation and enhancing business opportunities between the Pacific Islands and Mauritius and brings together representatives from across the regional private sector – and Business Mauritius, the apex body representing over 1200 companies in Mauritius with a thematic focus on the fisheries industry, a sector vital to both Pacific region and Mauritius.

Pacific Islands Forum Secretary General Henry Puna welcomed the alignment of the upcoming business exchange mission to the 2050 strategy for the Blue Pacific, adding he is “delighted to see the diversity and progress on this initiative. These business leaders will be sharing and gaining best-practices in the fisheries sector– such a vital industry in our region.”

“This learning exchange program will help accelerate economic growth and increase the role of the private sector in improving and expanding opportunities for our people– it’s driving global cooperation between the island nations of the Pacific and Africa, and I’m excited about that.”

Mauritius, which shares many geographical similarities with Forum Island Countries (FICs), continues to lead on the global stage, ranking number one in Africa for its consistent ease-of-doing-business policies and mechanisms according to a 2020 World Bank Report.

Business Mauritius Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Kevin Ramkaloan is grateful for the partnership and shared that he is looking forward to the one-week learning exchange and hosting the Pacific delegates in Port Louis.

“As a small island developing State, Mauritius has a lot to share with and learn from Pacific Islands in terms of sustainable fishery resource management and other important economic activities. I strongly believe both our memberships will gain from such a collaboration.” Mr Ramkaloan shared.

A participant, Mr. Timothy Vaikai of ‘The Fresh Fish Company’ in the Cook Islands shared that he is grateful for the opportunity.

“We are looking forward to meeting with businesses that align with our goals and missions. Our aim is to provide a consistent supply of ocean fish to the local tourism industry in our home country. We want to do this in a sustainable manner, whilst keeping in mind the need to be adaptable in a changing world climate”. Vaikai stated.

The mission entails a networking of Pacific and Mauritius business representatives in sharing lessons learned and best practices in terms of the fisheries industry and how both Pacific region and Mauritius can not only build up individual business capacities, but equally creating and strengthening avenues for increasing regional collaboration. The mission will also look to expand on the other four (4) key pillars detailed under the Joint Cooperation Framework, mainly; Economic Advocacy; Private Sector and Sustainable Development; Ease-of-Doing-Business and Policy Examinations; and International Trade Cooperation.

 

The Peer Learning Exchange Program is made possible through the European Union under the Strengthening Pacific Intra-Regional and International Trade (SPIRIT) project and the Commonwealth Secretariat.

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MEDIA CONTACTS:

Pacific Islands Forum (SPIRIT)

Communications and Monitoring & Evaluations Officer

Joeli Bili, joelif@forumsec.org, (679) 2803597;

 

Blast BCW

Managing Director

Lekha Seebaluck, publicrelations@blast.mu, (+230) 52580978