Russia wants to grow Pacific Island investment


<p style="text-align: justify;">Russia and the Eastern European states have shown increasing interest in developing ties with Pacific Island nations in recent years. Diplomatic visit have been exchanged and aid programmes have been promised and implemented. <!--more--></p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">But the first-ever high-level visit from the Russian Federation to expand ties with Pacific island countries took place in Fiji this week.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">A senior level delegation led by Sergev Lavrov, the Foreign Minister of the Government of the Russian Federation met with Fijian leaders as well as leaders and foreign affairs ministers from Micronesia, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">Russia has expressed an interest in cooperating with Pacific Island Countries in the areas of investment, minerals, energy, tourism, education and medicine. This visit is the culmination of talks that began with Russian officials last year on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. Among many of the points discussed this week were visa free travels between citizens of Russia and Fiji.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">Another independent Eastern European state of the erstwhile Soviet Union, Georgia, has donated 200 netbook computers to students in Fiji. The netbooks, produced in a Tbilisi-based factory, were donated during a visit during this week’s delegation. Georgian Foreign Minister Grigol Vashadze visited Fiji in October.</p>

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