RELEASE : Forum joins Global Digital Economy Partnership

04 November 2022, Suva: The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat has become the 35th member of the United Nations global eTrade for all initiative.

As the latest member of eTrade for all, the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) will continue leading on trade-related matters in the Pacific region, including in the area of e-commerce and delivering benefits for e-commerce learning and knowledge in the region.

“We are pleased to be the latest addition to the eTrade for all initiative and join forces with partners to improve digital trade readiness in the Pacific”, said Mere Falemaka, Ambassador, Permanent Delegation of the Pacific Island Forum to the World Trade Organization and the United Nations in Geneva.

“The COVID-19 pandemic presents both challenges and opportunities for the world, including our region. It is therefore essential that Pacific businesses are well-equipped to face this new digital era to avoid the risk of falling behind”, Ms. Falemaka added.

PIFS initiated the Pacific E-commerce Initiative in 2017. E-commerce is one of the four priorities of the Pacific Aid-for-Trade Strategy 2020-2025, noting its potential to narrow distances and trade costs, and to promote diversification of Pacific economies. A Pacific E-commerce Portal, the regional information repository on e-commerce development in the Pacific, was launched in August this year.

Shamika Sirimanne, Director of the UNCTAD Division on Technology and Logistics welcomed the new member and said: “I am proud to lead this unique global partnership that connects the dots between countries, partners and donors and leverages the digital economy for inclusive and sustainable development.”

Launched in 2016, the eTrade for all initiative serves as a global helpdesk for information and contacts on technical assistance in the policy areas that are key to the development of e-commerce and the digital economy in developing countries.

It has since generated widely acknowledged and critical spin-offs, such as the eTrade readiness assessments and the eTrade for Women initiative.

“We look forward to engaging further with PIFS and other partners to expand the current support for e-commerce and digital development in the Pacific region for the benefit of all,” said Ms. Sirimanne. –ENDS


Media Contact: Donna Tekanene Reiher –

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