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     Government of the Republic of Fiji

  Ministry of Foreign Affairs

    A Better Fiji through Excellence in Foreign Service

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Media Release

High Commissioner Tikotikoca Presents Credentials to PNG GG

HE_Romanu_present_credential_to_PNG_GG

3rd August 2012: Fiji’s High Commissioner to Papua New Guinea, His Excellency Romanu Tikotikoca presented his Credentials to the Governor General of Papua New Guinea Sir Michael Ogio at 10am yesterday Thursday 2nd August 2012 at Government House in Konedobu, Port Moresby. His Excellency was accompanied by Mrs. Tikotikoca, Second Secretary Vilitati Mataitini and Mrs Josifini Mataitini and Third Secretary Peceli Tulele.

In presenting his Credentials, HC Tikotikoca also conveyed to the Governor General and People of Papua New Guinea, the warm greetings and sincere good wishes of the President, Government and People of Fiji. He said Fiji and PNG have enjoyed close and friendly relations ever since the arrival of the first Missionaries from Fiji in 1875. Fiji was grateful to the PNG Government and its people for its understanding during the recent difficult times Fiji has encountered.

HC Tikotikoca stated that the commencement of constitutional consultations and launch of the voter registration process confirms Fiji’s commitment towards fundamental reforms of democratic and Government institutions in Fiji and that the Government of Fiji is serious about its intentions to rebuild Fiji into a stable, peaceful and truly democratic nation. In this respect, Fiji greatly appreciates the enormous assistance offered by the Government of PNG and that he looks forward to working closely with the PNG Government in the continuing efforts to improve and enhance the friendly and close relationship between our two countries.

In his response, the Governor General stated that thirty six years on, following the establishment of formal diplomatic relations in September 1975, relations between our two countries has been cordial.  Relations expanded through the area of trade, technical cooperation and high levels of political visit by both countries, which re-enforced the commitment to each other in our relationship over the last thirty six years.

The Governor General continued that both countries supported issues of common interests such as Climate Change and Environment Issues, Security, Good Governance, Poverty Alleviation, Economic Prosperity, Gender Equalities, Education and other important agendas at the International and Regional forums. Despite the political climate of Fiji, investments from both countries continue to show evidence of increasing and flourishing business activities of both countries.

The Governor General observed that the conducive investment climate between the two countries contributed to increased trade and economic activities.  The Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) Trade arrangements has also played an important role in terms of reduction of duties on identified goods and services which encouraged more trading to occur.

The Governor General closed by saying that during the last Forum Ministerial Contact Group visit to Fiji in May this year, it was encouraging to note Fiji’s positive progress towards preparations on the return to constitutional and parliamentary democracy through the roadmap for rebuilding Fiji. The timetable has been followed through diligently with adequate election preparations and the commencement of the planned consultation on Fiji’s new constitution for adoption 2013 and the final stage of holding elections by 2014.  This clearly demonstrates Fiji’s commitments towards returning to parliamentary democracy. Papua New Guinea stands ready to offer necessary assistance towards Fiji to return to democracy.  He reassured HC Tikotikoca that the Government of Papua New Guinea stands ready to render all the support that may be required in discharging his responsibilities as representative of Fiji to promote and strengthen relations between the two countries.

HC Tikotikoca replaces Mr. Niumaia Tabunakawai whose term as Fiji’s High Commissioner to PNG ended last month.

(Photo caption:Presentation of credentials by Fiji’s new High Commissioner to PNG, HE Romanu Tikotikoca to the Governor General of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea, HE Sir Michael Ogio)

(Copies of the speeches is attached)



REMARKS BY HIGH COMMISSIONER DESIGNATE MR. ROMANU TIKOTIKOCA TO HIS EXCELLENCY SIR MICHAEL OGIO, THE GOVERNOR GENERAL OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA ON THE OCCASION OF THE PRESENTATION OF THE LETTERS OF CREDENCE APPOINTING MR. ROMANU TIKOTIKOCA AS THE HIGH COMMISSIONER OF THE REPUBLIC OF FIJI TO THE INDEPENDENT STATE OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA

I HAVE THE HONOUR TO PRESENT THE LETTERS OF CREDENCE BY HIS EXCELLENCY THE PRESIDENT, RATU EPELI NAILATIKAU, FROM THE REPUBLIC OF FIJI TO THE INDEPENDENT STATE OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA, APPOINTING ME AS HIGH COMMISSIONER OF FIJI TO THE INDEPENDENT STATE OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA.

I ALSO HAVE THE HONOUR TO PRESENT THE LETTER OF RECALL OF MY PREDECESSOR.

YOUR EXCELLENCY, WITH THE PRESENTATION OF MY CREDENTIALS, I HAVE THE GREATEST PLEASURE TO CONVEY TO YOU SIR, AND THE PEOPLE OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA, THE VERY WARM GREETINGS AND SINCERE GOOD WISHES OF THE PRESIDENT, THE GOVERNMENT AND THE PEOPLE OF THE REPUBLIC OF FIJI, FOR YOUR CONTINUED WELL BEING AND PROSPERITY.


PAPUA NEW GUINEA AND FIJI HAVE ENJOYED CLOSE AND FRIENDLY RELATIONS FOR MANY YEARS EVER SINCE THE ARRIVAL OF FIJI’S MISSIONARIES TO YOUR SHORES IN 1875.  THE REPUBLIC OF FIJI IS GRATEFUL TO YOUR GOVERNMENT AND THE PEOPLE, FOR YOUR UNDERSTANDING DURING THE DIFFICULT TIMES OUR NATION ENCOUNTERED.

YOUR EXCELLENCY, THE RECENT LAUNCH OF THE ELECTRONIC VOTER REGISTRATION AND THE COMMENCEMENT OF CONSTITUTIONAL CONSULTATIONS PROCESS IN FIJI, CONFIRM OUR COMMITMENT TO THE ACHIEVEMENT OF A FUNDAMENTAL REFORM OF DEMOCRATIC AND GOVERNMENT INSTITUTIONS IN FIJI.

FIJI’S COMMITMENT TO TRANSPARENCY, CREDIBILITY AND STABILITY PROVIDES A RE-ASSURING MESSAGE TO THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY THAT THE GOVERNMENT IS SERIOUS ABOUT ITS INTENTION TO REBUILD FIJI INTO A STABLE, PEACEFUL AND TRULY DEMOCRATIC NATION.

FIJI GREATLY APPRECIATES THE ENORMOUS ASSISTANCE OFFERED BY THE GOVERNMENT OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA.  WE WISH TO ACKNOWLEDGE THE STRENGTHENING OF OUR COMMERCIAL RELATIONSHIP IN THE LAST FEW YEARS.

THIS IS EVIDENT BY THE COMMENCEMENT OF DIRECT FLIGHTS BETWEEN PORT MORESBY AND NADI, ESTABLISHMENT OF FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS IN FIJI AND INVESTMENT BY FIJIAN BUSINESSES IN PAPUA NEW GUINEA.

WE LOOK FORWARD TO WORKING CLOSELY WITH YOUR GOVERNMENT IN THE CONTINUING EFFORTS TO IMPROVE AND ENHANCE THE FRIENDLY AND CLOSE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN FIJI AND PAPUA NEW GUINEA.

YOUR EXCELLENCY, IT IS NOW MY PRIVILEGE AND INDEED AN HONOUR TO PRESENT TO YOU SIR, MY LETTER OF CREDENCE AS WELL AS THE LETTER OF RECALL OF MY PREDECESSOR.



REPLY SPEECH BY H.E. SIR MICHAEL OGIO, GCL, GCMG, KST.J,GOVERNOR GENERAL OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA ON THE OCCASION OF THE PRESENTATION OF CREDENTIALS BY HIS EXCELLENCY MR. ROMANU TIKOTIKOCA, HIGH COMMISSIONER-DESIGNATE OF THE REPUBLIC OF FIJI ISLANDS TO THE INDEPENDENT STATE OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA ON THE 2ND AUGUST, 2012 – GOVERNMENT HOUSE

Your Excellency,

I am indeed very honoured and pleased to welcome you to Papua New Guinea, on my own behalf and that of the Government and people of Papua New Guinea.

I also have the further honour and privilege to, on behalf of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth the II, accept the Letters of Credence by which His Excellency the President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau of the Republic of Fiji Islands accredits you as the Republic of Fiji Islands High Commissioner to the Independent State of Papua New Guinea.

I also accept the Letter of Recall of your predecessor, His Excellency Dr. Niumaia Tabunakawai of Fiji to myself, and the Government and people of Papua New Guinea.

In return, I would like to convey through you, to His Excellency the President, our sincere best wishes for His Excellency’s well being and good health and for peace and prosperity for the Government and people of the Republic of Fiji Islands.

Excellency,


Thirty six years on, following the establishment of formal diplomatic relations in September 1975, relations between our two countries has been cordial.  Relations expanded through the area of trade, technical cooperation and high levels of political visit by both countries, which re-enforced the commitment to each other in our relationship over the last thirty six years.

Both countries supported issues of common interests such as Climate Change and Environment Issues, Security, Good Governance, Poverty Alleviation, Economic Prosperity, Gender Equalities, Education and other important agendas at the International and Regional forums.

Excellency,


Despite the political climate of Fiji, investments from both countries continue to show evidence of increasing and flourishing business activities of both countries.

The conducive investment climate between the two countries contributed to increased trade and economic activities.  The Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) Trade arrangements has also played an important role in terms of reduction of duties on identified goods and services which encouraged more trading to occur.

The LNG project has contributed to increasing Fijian investments in Papua New Guinea since 2008.  This is evident that Melanesian based companies are able to compete equally with other international companies whilst utilising the advantage of robust Trade Policies of both countries and the MSG Trade arrangements.


Excellency,


During the last Forum Ministerial Contact Group visit to Fiji in May this year, it is encouraging to note Fiji’s positive progress towards preparations on the return to constitutional and parliamentary democracy through the roadmap for rebuilding Fiji.

The timetable has been followed through diligently with adequate election preparations and the commencement of the planned consultation on Fiji’s new constitution for adoption 2013 and the final stage of holding elections by 2014.  This clearly demonstrates Fiji’s commitments towards returning to parliamentary democracy.

Papua New Guinea stands ready to offer necessary assistance towards Fiji to return to democracy.  We believe in the fundamental values and the principles of democracy, mutual respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, human dignity and development aspirations that aim to enhance the interests and wellbeing of their respective citizens. The fundamental principles of democracy are important mechanisms that are found through the institutions of democracy.

Finally, your Excellency, I assure you that the Government of Papua New Guinea stands ready to render all the support you may require in discharging your responsibilities as representative of your country to promote and strengthen relations between our two countries.
Thank you.


Michael Ogio
Governor General of Papua New Guinea