Government of the Republic of Fiji
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
A Better Fiji through Excellence in Foreign Service
3rd February, 2012, Suva, Fiji: Dr Jiko Luveni, Minister for Social Welfare, Women and Poverty Alleviation officially launched the Fiji China Friendship Association at the Lower Hall of the Suva Civic Centre.
Dr Luveni in her inaugural address stated that “today marks another milestone achievement in the bilateral relation between Fiji and the People’s Republic of China and we are present here this morning to witness the launch of the Fiji China Friendship Association (FCFA).
This Association is the extension of the relations between our two countries to include our people in an effort to promote and strengthen understanding, friendship and cooperation through people to people programs and activities.”
She acknowledged “the contributions from the Chinese Peoples Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries and the China Oceania Friendship Association (both based in China). The Embassy of the Peoples Republic of China in Fiji, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the Fiji China Business Council, the Board of Directors and individuals and most importantly, the working Committee Members for their tireless efforts and dedication in the preparation of the documentations, advertisements and publications that enable the realization of this dream within a stringent timeline.
The bilateral exchanges between our people in all spheres of development from the grassroots level on poverty reduction, culture, sports and women in development right up to corporate level on trade and investment will be developed and strengthened through the association, and your membership as a guarantee.
Looking ahead, there are great potentials for exchanges and discussions, greater awareness of life in China in Fiji, and life in Fiji in China. When people from China visit Fiji, they will find intimate friends and vice versa. Processes and procedures will be minimized when facilitated in the spirit of friendship.”
In his remarks the Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China H.E. Huang Yong said that:
“The establishment of the FCFA has drawn much attention and support from government of both sides. It has also won warm support of friends from various circles in Fiji. A lot of preparation work has been accomplished in the past months that have led to today’s successful launching of the FCFA.
The launching of the Fiji China Friendship Association opens a new channel in the China – Fiji relations. It is a bridge to link our two peoples and a catalyst to promote cooperation between us.
It is an open and inclusive organization that extends its arms to everyone who is willing to make contribution from all of us, the Association will play an important role in our bilateral relations and our people to people friendship will be greatly enhanced.
The Chinese Embassy will work with our Fijian friends to make the Association a success.”
The Permanent Secretary for Foreign Affairs Ms Saipora Mataikabara acknowledged the good work that has been undertaken by various organizations that promote the Fiji China Relations such as the Fiji China Business Council and the Chinese Association in Fiji.
These are non-governmental organizations. However, the Fiji China Friendship Association is a non- profit organization that has the official support of the two governments. The formation of this association is a result of the visit in August last year by the President of the China Oceania Friendship Association.
Following the launch of the FCFA, the Annual General Meeting of the Association was held whereby the Articles of the Association and the Board of Directors were approved.
(Photo caption: FCFA Board Members;From back: Mrs. Bernadette Rounds Ganilau, Mr. Dixon Seeto; Front left – right: Mr. William Situ, Mr. Praveen Bala, Mr. Chandu Umaria, Dr. Jiko Luveni, SIR James AhKoy, Ms. Saipora Mataikabara, Mr. Ravuni Uluilakeba)
Ministry of Foreign Affairs P. O. Box 2220 Government Buildings Suva, Fiji