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Hon Prime Minister Meets with Japan’s Parliamentary Vice – Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon Mr. Iwao Horii

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6th August, 2018 TONGAN The Prime Minister, Hon Samuela ‘Akilisi Pohiva met with the Japan’s Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon Mr. Iwao Horii, at the Prime Minister’s Office on Saturday, 4 August 2018.

The primary purpose of the meeting was to further enhance the bilateral relations between Tonga and Japan and the agenda included the follow-up to 8th Pacific Islands Leaders’ Meeting (PALM 8) that was held in May. The meeting also discussed development projects that Japan had already agreed to fund through grant aid including the Wind Power Generation System that is designed to add 1.3 Megawatts to Tonga’s renewable energy portfolio, as well as the disaster risk reduction project called “Nationwide Early Warning System” (NEWS) that will cost TOP$56 million, and includes the construction of a new headquarters for the Tonga Broadcasting Commission.

In welcoming the Parliamentary Vice – Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Prime Minister took the opportunity to thank the Government of Japan for the recently opened domestic wharf terminal by saying, “Tonga is most fortunate for the completion of the Taufa’ahau Tupou IV wharf and terminal which rests majestically on the waterfront area. We are so proud of it! The wharf is expected to boost cargo, and mobilise people and goods, and boost the domestic economy and overseas trade.”

Hon Mr. Iwao Horii in turn thanked the Hon Prime Minster for agreeing to meet with him on the Saturday morning as his travel itinerary did not allow him to spend more time in the country. He also expressed appreciation for Deputy Prime Minister Semisi Sika’s participation at PALM 8 as well as Tonga’s support at various international fora. He also said, “Japan values its bilateral relations with Tonga and we will continue to maintain the close relations between our Royal Families and continue exchanges at all levels including the grassroots. We also look forward to celebrating the 50th anniversary of our diplomatic relations in 2020.” Japan’s Parliamentary Vice – Minister for Foreign Affairs also presented to the Hon Prime Minister a personal letter from the Prime Minister of Japan, Hon Mr. Shinzo Abe.

The Hon Prime Minister also took the opportunity to raise Tonga’s request for assistance that had been conveyed via the Japanese Embassy in Nuku’alofa for the extension of the airport runway at Fua’amotu Airport by 400 metres which is estimated to cost $40 million. Hon Mr. Iwao Horii in response said that the Japanese Government looks forward to receiving more detailed information through their Embassy in Nuku’alofa regarding the runway extension and perhaps the renovation of the existing airport terminal.

Hon Mr. Iwao Horii was accompanied to the meeting by Japan’s Ambassador to Tonga, HE. Mr. Tetsuya Ishii, and a traveling delegation of three officials as well as Japanese Embassy staff. The delegation had arrived in Tonga on Friday midnight and was scheduled to depart on Saturday evening. Their schedule in Tonga also included a meeting with the Deputy Prime Minister, Hon Semisi Sika, as well as site visits to the Taufa’ahau Tupou IV Wharf and Terminal as well as the Japanese funded solar-panel farm in Vaini.

ENDS

Issued by the: The Prime Minister’s Office, P.O. Box 62, Nuku’alofa, Tonga. Tel: (676) 24 644 Fax: (676) 23 888; For media enquiries- Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 08 August 2018 16:11 )  

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