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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

Minister Kubuabola addresses UNESCAP meeting

 

 Bangkok 23 May 2011: The High Level Segment of the 67th Session of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) got underway in Bangkok, Thailand today with Foreign Ministers from Asia and the Pacific debating on the theme: “Beyond the crisis: long-term perspective on social protection and development in Asia and Pacific”. In the aftermath of the food, fuel and financial crises, this year’s UNESCAP Session theme takes aim at social protection as an investment in social and economic development and a means of addressing poverty and inequality.

Contributing to the debate, Fiji’s Foreign Minister and Minister for International Cooperation, Ratu Inoke Kubuabola said that the 67th Session theme was appropriate and pertinent countries in Asia and the Pacific share experience and reflect upon the challenge faced, when they attempted to steer their respective economies out from the aftermath of the world financial crisis and as they prepare platforms of economic reforms in search of generating growth to ensure social protection and development.

Ratu Inoke informed the session that overall, Fiji’s economy is now projected to grow 2.7 percent in 2011 compared to the 1.3 percent envisaged earlier. “Recent data showed improved consumption activities, supported by private sector credit and improved employment conditions. Investment conditions however, remained subdued although higher realized investments in the public and resource based sectors such as mining, mineral water, fishing and forestry should strengthen investment activities this year” Kubuabola said.

Ratu Inoke also took advantage of the Session to account Government’s social protection policies and activities saying that the current Government is focused in delivering an inclusive and sustainable development agenda by targeting the marginalized groups in the rural sectors and the socially disadvantaged in the urban centers.

Annual Sessions of UNESCAP are usually preceded by a Senior Official Session. END