Fiji Embassy Tokyo Delivers “Cyclone Winston Appeal Fund” Cheque for PM’s “Adopt-a-School” Program

Ambassador Mataitoga presented the Fiji Embassy’s (FET)  Cyclone Winston Appeal Funds to Prime Minister Bainimarama on 23th January 2017.

Winston Appeal Funds - Handover

HE Mataitoga hands over the F$250,000 cheque to Prime Minister Bainimarama

In handing over the F$250,000 cheque, HE Mataitoga informed the Prime Minister that the funds comes with the prayers and warm wishes of Fiji’s friends in Japan towards Fiji’s recovery and rehabilitation efforts, especially for students and youths.

The PM was informed that the Embassy coordinated Winston Appeal efforts saw donations from Japanese Prefectural and City Governments, businesses, academia, NGOs, Fijian community, individuals, Japanese students, and people from all walks of life.

 

Fiji Embassy Tokyo

 

For additional news coverage, see links below;

http://fijisun.com.fj/2017/01/24/japanese-official-makes-courtesy-call/

 

Japan Commends Fiji’s Role in the International Fora

Japan’s Parliamentary Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon. Mr Motome Takizawa during a bilateral meeting with Fiji’s Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations, Hon.Mr Jone Usamate, acknowledged and commended Fiji’s efforts in the various international forums advocating and rallying the Pacific’s voice for action towards climate change, oceans and sustainable development related issues.

MIM3 courtesy call

Hon.Usamate with Hon.Takizawa

Hon.Takizawa informed of Japan’s support towards Fiji on these forums, as well as working closely with the Pacific Islands countries to ensure success in pursuing the outcomes of the 7th Pacific Leaders Meeting (PALM-7).  Mr.Takizawa also indicated the Japanese government’s willingness to continue its assistance in the areas of disaster risk reduction (DRR) and post-disaster rehabilitation particularly of schools in Fiji.  He added that He added that Japan eagerly awaits the outcome of the Fijian Government consultation with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in regard to Nadi River Flood Control Projects, and looks forward to further assisting Fiji in its infrastructure rehabilitation and development needs.

The Parliamentary Vice Minister in acknowledging Fiji’s support towards Japan’s bid for the UN Security Council membership, also requested Fiji’s support in Japan efforts towards membership in the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS).

Hon.Minister Usamate expressed the Fijian Government’s appreciation for Japan’s continued assistance in the areas of disaster response and rehabilitation, and Japan’s longstanding commitment towards Fijian education and its contributions, through scholarships, towards the upskilling Fiji’s pool of human resources.  Minister Usamate informed that Fiji will continue to value its friendship with Japan, and looks forward to furthering this partnership.

Hon.Minister Usamate is currently in Japan to attend the Third Ministerial Interm Meeting for PALM-7 on behalf of the Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs.  He was accompanied by the Permanent Secretary  for Foreign Affairs, Mr.Robin Nair, Fiji’s Ambassador to Japan, HE Isikeli Mataitoga, and Fiji Embassy officials Mr Isikeli Nadalo (First Secretary) and Ms.Kelera Savu (Second Secretary).

 

Embassy of the Republic of Fiji

Tokyo, Japan

17/1/2017

 

Hon.Minister Usamate Attends Regional Consultations In Tokyo

Hon Jone Usumate represented Fiji on behalf of Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs at the Regional Ministerial Consultations with Japan in Tokyo. He was accompanied by Permanent Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Robin Nair and Fiji Ambassador in Tokyo, Ambassador Isikeli Mataitoga.

MIM3 1

Fiji’s Minister for Employment, Productivity & Industrial Relations, Hon.Jone Usamate (left back) at the Press Conference. At the front are Japan’s Foreign Minister Hon.Kishida flanked by his co-chair, FSM Foreign Secretary Hon.Robert (left).

The Third PALM Ministerial Interim Meeting between the Forum Island Countries (FIC) and Japan was held in Tokyo on 17 January 2017. The meeting which was held at the level of Ministers to review the progress and implementation of the decisions that were agreed to by the Leaders of Japan and FICs when they met in Iwaki City, Fukushima in May 2015.

Most of the Forum Island Countries were represented at Ministerial level and some at level of Head of Government level. The meeting was Co-Chaired by Hon Fumio Kishida, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Japan and Hon. Lorin Robert, Secretary of Foreign Affairs of the Federated States of Micronesia from FIC side.

The main issues discussed were the follow up in Japan/Forum Island Countries cooperation in the international fora, United Nations Reform and support for international conferences hosted by Pacific Island Countries. In the second session of the meeting the two main areas discussed covered working towards sustainable development and self-sufficient development through addressing environmental challenges brought about by climate change, Disaster Risk Reduction and waste management.

Hon Fumio Kishida in his opening remarks to the meeting acknowledges the important role Fiji will be engaged in as Chair of COP 23 of the UNFCCC and, also as co-host of the Global Conference on Sustainable Use of Oceans and Seas in 2017. He observed that Japan will support Fiji in these roles.

Hon Jone Usamate spoke on trade, investment and business development issues and the need to develop investment and business opportunities that create jobs for PICs. In terms of the issues that may be reflected on the agenda of the PALM 8 Meeting in 2018 he suggested that trade in services needs to discussed as an area of international trade that most PICs could be engaged in. The need to look at SMEs from Prefectural Government to engage with PICs counterparts, given their comparable economies of scale is to be encouraged through Japanese assistance.

At the end of the 3rd Ministerial Interim Meeting, the Hon Fumio Kishida announced that the next date of the 8th PALM Leaders Meeting will be 17-18 May 2018 and to be hosted in Iwaki City, Fukushima.

MIM3

The Hon Mr. Jone Usamate MP, Minister of Employment, Productivity, and Industrial relations was the head of the Fijian Delegation with Ambassador Robin Nair, Permanent Secretary of Foreign Affairs, and Ambassador Isikeli Mataitoga, Ambassador of Republic of Fiji to Japan. Assisting the Fiji Delegations were Mr Isikeli Nadalo, First Secretary and Ms Kelera Savu Second Secretary.

 

Embassy of the Republic of Fiji

Tokyo, Japan

17/1/2017

 

 

Follow-up Discussions on Aviation Agreement Between Fiji and Japan

On Friday, 29 July 2016, Charge’ d’ Affaires, Counselor Mrs Korovou, hosted a lunch meeting with officials from the Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (CAB), of the Ministry of Land, Transport, Infrastructure & Tourism (MLITT), who were part of the Japanese delegation to the Air Services Agreement (ASA) and direct flight bilateral consultations, held in Fiji on the 6th – 7th of July. The FET was party to the coordination of this bilateral talks. The lunch was also attended by Second Secretary Kelera Savu.

The meeting was to touch base on discussion outcomes in Fiji as well as to consider follow-up actions required from the FET side.

The meeting noted that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Tokyo) has jurisdiction over the drafting of the revised ASA.  Moreover, as per the bilateral discussions in Suva, the ASA will consider a series of modernized aviation provisions between Fiji and Japan, that anticipates expanding civil aviation cooperation between the two countries. This would allow the designated airlines of both countries to operate three passenger or cargo flights per week, beginning in late 2019, with an expansion to four flights per week.

Direct Flight

Ms. Savu and Mrs Korovou with MLITT officials

Exploring Innovative Practices at the International Symposium on Capacity Building for Sustainable Oceans, Tokyo – July 2016

The Nippon Foundation and Government of Japan, in collaboration with The Nature Conservancy hosted an International Symposium on Capacity Building for Sustainable Oceans from 19th July to 20th July 2016, at The Capitol Hotel Tokyu in Tokyo, Japan. The symposimum was attended to by Heads of Government, science, industry, academia, international organizations and community representatives.

Sustainable Oceans seminar

(L-R) Ambassador Matsutaro (Palau), Ambasasdor Tupou (Tonga), HE Tommy Remmengesau (President of the Republic of Palau) and Ambasasdor Mataitoga at the Welcome Reception

The two-day symposium is in pursuit of the commitment made by The Nippon Foundation at the Rio+20, to open a global dialogue to support many communities and countries to improve ocean health. The Foundation together with the Government of Japan and The Nature Conservancy then created a platform to explore innovative Global ocean building practices on the managing of our oceans and educating and connecting. Profile of practical examples of successful programs at the community level, as well as cross-boundary networks to discover the available opportunities for taking care of our oceans were also noted.

The two-day symposium also explored elements of each practice which are specifically effective at building capacity in relation to issues such as ocean education, fisheries, marine and coastal planning,  climate change adaptation, science for decision making and multi-stakeholder networks. It also provided a special panel discussion on the Future Prospect for Ocean Education in Japan, stressing on the need to create more awareness of the ocean’s essential services and contributions, to which one mentioned of the need to increase applicants for jobs on the sea.

H.E Tommy Remengesau Jr., President, Republic of Palau and H.E. Anote Tong, Former President of the Republic of Kiribati also gave keynote speeches at the Symposium Opening. Ambassador Mataitoga and Second Secretary Kelera Savu attended from the Embassy.

Establishing Ties with Japanese VAT Collection Management Systems Company – BMC International

HE Mr Isikeli Mataitoga met with Mr Tetsuo Yamada, the President of BMC International, on Thursday, 7 July 2016, at the Fiji Embassy with the object of discussing newly established business ties with Fiji. The meeting was attended to by the Director of Pacific Islands Center (PIC), Mr Ryuzu Saito and Second Secretary Kelera Savu.

BMC Int.

(L-R) Mr. Yamada, Ambassador Mataitoga & Mr. Sato

BMC gave an update of their new venture with the Government of Fiji through Datec Fiji Limited. BMC International is widely renowned for developing efficient and secure VAT Collection Management Systems (VCMS), assisting Governments and National Tax Agencies with the VAT collections in over 20 countries.

The FET was informed that, BMC in working with FRCA, will install systems in Supermarkets first before expanding to other business entities. The first shipment of VCMS is is expected to be air-freight in mid-August 2016.  The relevant training for implementation is expected to be undertaken from November 2016.

 

Off-Shore Vehicle Inspection Requirement for Used Vehicles from Japan by the Fiji Government

The Japan Export Vehicle Inspection Centre (JEVIC), on the 15th of June was appointed, by the Fiji Land Transport Authority (LTA), as the official Offshore Vehicle Inspector, tasked with “appraising vehicle conditions and ensuring some set standards in the quality of second-hand vehicles” imported into Fiji from Japan.

The appointment, through competitive international tender, comes following consultations by the relevant authorities and agencies in Fiji.  This was in response to complaints and issues raised by stakeholders with regards to the quality of used vehicles brought into the country.

This appointment means that “beginning from 15th August 2016, no used vehicle imported from Japan will be allowed to enter Fiji, unless inspected and certified by JEVIC prior to shipping.

The inspection in Japan will begin from 15th July 2016.

 

 

For more information see the JEVIC link – http://jevic.com/services/vehicle-maritime-inspections/roadworthiness-fiji/index.html

Fiji LTA Notice – http://jevic.com/assets/Uploads/Fiji_LTA_Jun2016.pdf

 

Fiji Government Tender

 Fiji Government Tender

The Government of Fiji’s Procurement Office under the Ministry of Finance is currently extending its invitation to overseas companies to bid for Government Tenders. This exercise is aimed at attracting vendors with quality products and excellent services that will boost competition within our local market.

For further information and to view current tenders please click http://www.fpo.gov.fj/index.php/tenders/new-tenders

Strengthening Fraternal Relations between the Pacific and Oita Prefecture through the Asia-Pacific University Oceania Students Programme

Envoys of the Pacific Island Countries (PICs) on Friday, 10th June, travelled to Beppu City and Oita City in the Kyushu region (South of Japan) for a two day conference organised by the Asia Pacific University (APU) Oceania Students Association as part of the week long Oceania programme. The FET was represented by Counsellor Korovou in her capacity as the Charge’ d’ Affaires.

PICS Oita 1

PICs Envoys in APU

The two-day Conference featured discussions and exchange of views by PIC’s Embassy representatives on the theme of Climate Change, and was also aimed at promoting the the Pacific to the APU and Oita community at large.

PICS Oita 2

Discussions on Climate Change

This was an enriching experience for the audience, majority of whom were APU students and academia. The space allowed the PIC envoys to share information and encounters on Climate Change impacts in the region based on experiences of individual island state. The discussions also spanned issues on women in diplomacy, life of a diplomat, labour migration, and ODA in the context of climate change.

PICS Oita 3

Performance by the APU PICs students

 

Increasing Visibility in Regional Japan – The FET Visits Saga and Fukuoka Prefectures

The FET undertook Prefectural visit to the south of Japan in April (26th to 28th), one of the means of forging close bilateral relations with Japanese counterparts and constituents, especially Regional-Japan.  Ambassadors Mataitoga, accompanied by FS Nadalo, visited the prefectures of Saga and Fukuoka in the Kyushu region, paying courtesy visits on the Governors of the two prefectures as well as the Mayors of Saga City and Munakata City. The FET team also took the opportunity to visit the Queen Victoria School (QVS) U18 rugby team that was representing Fiji at the annual SANIX World Youth Rugby Tournament (April 26th to May 5th) in Fukuoka.