Vanuatu

COVID-19:Melanesian bubble 'not worth risk' to health

The economic strains caused by COVID-19 have prompted leaders of the five member countries of the Melanesian Spearhead Group, Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Solomon Islands, New Caledonia and Vanuatu, to discuss a potential bubble. 

At a leaders' meeting last week in Port Vila, Acting Director of the Secretariat, George Hoa'au, said a Five Point Sustainability Plan was being developed to help ensure members are resilient to the challenges. 

But commentator Elisapeci Waqanivala said that the discussion isn't providing enough details for people to be aware of its real intention.

Aviation safety sector works together to respond to TC Harold

This is part of efforts to assist the operators as they respond to Tropical Cyclone Harold.

“PASO is currently providing technical expertise to CAAV to assist with airworthiness certificates renewals for commercial chartered operators’ aircraft that have had major maintenance carried out,” said PASO Operations Manager, Netava Waqa.

In-country COVID-19 testing for 17 Pacific Island countries expected soon

According to the Director of the Public Health Division of the Pacific Community (SPC) Paula Vivili, only five countries currently are able to offer in-country testing.

These countries are Fiji, French Polynesia, Guam, New Caledonia and Papua New Guinea

Israel-Pacific Leaders Summit becomes an established Forum

“These Summit’s will be open to all Pacific Island Countries as it will further strengthen the cooperation with the State of Israel in disaster preparedness through the exchange of knowledge, experience, state of art technology, and courses offered in Israel by Israeli experts. This will also enable Israel as per President Rueven Rivlin’s, affirmation that we will continue and strengthen support for humanitarian assistance in cases of emergency and during disasters,” Israel’s Ambassador to the Pacific Islands, Ambassador Tibor Schlosser said.

Australia welcomes Pacific security leaders

The conference, hosted by the Chief of the Defence Force General Angus Campbell AO DSC, Australian Federal Police Commissioner Reece P Kershaw APM, and Australian Border Force Commissioner Michael Outram APM, facilitated strategic-level dialogue and demonstrated capabilities relevant to security agencies across the region.

The themes for the event focused on transnational, organised and serious crime; border security, and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.

OFC Youth Tournament set to kick-off in Port Vila

The U-18 tournament is being organised with UEFA through the UEFA Assist Programme, with the focus not on winning a title, but on the development aspects an international event can provide.

The aim is to positively impact the players, coaches and referees and enhance their performance on and off the field, to provide experience, inspire learning and to improve performance at an international level.

Business Link Pacific Portal to launch across the Pacific in unique four-country event

The Business Link Pacific Portal is an innovative online platform designed to connect quality business advisors with small and medium-sized growing businesses in the Pacific.  

To mark the launch of the Portal, Business Link Pacific are co-hosting four launch events, one in each country, which are open to small and medium sized businesses and free to attend.  

Cook Islands to face Tonga for netball gold

Cook Islands booked a place in the final by defeating Papua New Guinea 58-31 at the Multisport Centre, Faleata, urged on by their boisterous fans.

“This is great for Cook Island netball. Last time we were in a gold medal match was 1991. We have a huge support base, both here and at home,” said coach Suzanne Evans.

Both teams entered the game undefeated from pool matches. Cook Islands took the lead and kept PNG goaled for the first four minutes.

Tonga one of six hopefuls to stage 2027 Pacific Games despite withdrawing as 2019 hosts

American Samoa, Fiji, Guam, Tahiti and Vanuatu have also lodged their interest with the Pacific Games Council (PGC).

The declaration of interest from Tonga is one of the most eye-catching of the potential contenders.

The kingdom was awarded the 2019 Pacific Games back in 2012, having seen off competition from Tahiti.

Tonga's Government withdrew from hosting the Games in 2017, citing financial concerns as the motive for the decision.

It led to the PGC reopening the bid process and selecting Samoa as replacement hosts in December 2017.

Draw made for football competition at Samoa 2019 Pacific Games

Conducted by Football Federation Samoa, the draw used seedings based on FIFA rankings.

In the men's event, six teams had been set to be placed in Group A and five in Group B but due to an mistake on the day, five teams were drawn for Group A and six for Group B.

To rectify this, a straight swap was carried out in the match schedules between the groups.

Group A features hosts Samoa, Tonga, New Zealand under-23s, Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu.

New Caledonia are the top seeds in Group B, alongside American Samoa, Tuvalu, Tahiti, Fiji and Solomon Islands.