Government of the Federated States of Micronesia

Australia Day hosted in FSM

PALIKIR, Pohnpei (FSM Information Service): February 1, 2002 - Australian Day was celebrated in the Federated States of Micronesia on Friday January 25, with a reception hosted by Ambassador Brendan Doran at the Australian compound.

Marked as the National Day, January 26, is the day Australia honors and celebrates their achievements as a stable democratic nation, a nation with "a strong economy and active engagement in regional and global affairs."

Australia and the FSM formally established diplomatic ties on July 06 1988, and have throughout the years progressively strengthened those ties through shared values and goals in the regional and global communities.

Australia has assisted and supported FSM's development by facilitating programs geared towards local education, information technology, health, environment and small-scale enterprises.

Most noteworthy among its numerous bi-lateral assistance are the human resource development programs which have assisted over hundreds of FSM citizens in the various fields of education and technology.

Equally vital to the development and security of the nation is the assistance through the Marine Surveillance program. Australia had provided FSM with patrol boats for the protection and management of its marine resources, one of the vital factors in the economic development of the nation.

"In a very practical and evident way the project supports the maintenance of full sovereignty over FSM's exclusive economic zones."

Officials and key personnel from the national and state government joined the Australian community in FSM and celebrate Australia's National Day.

The following is a National Day message from Australia's resident Ambassador in FSM, Ambassador Brendan Doran:

"On the occasion of Australia Day (26 January), I send my best wishes to the Australian community and to the people of the FSM who have links with Australia through government, business, educational and sporting contact or aid, NGO and voluntary work.

The date itself derives from the arrival of the first European settlers on the Australian continent on 26 January 1788. But, more importantly, this is the day each year that Australians mark as their National Day when we celebrate our achievements as a stable democratic nation with a diverse and multicultural society, a strong economy and an active engagement in regional and global affairs. In 2000 and 2001 we also celebrated the hosting of the Sydney Olympics and our Centenary of Federation. Both these events gave rise to opportunities for our Pacific Island brothers and sisters to share in our celebrations. The Olympic Torch relay and increased sporting contact brought us closer together as peoples.

Australia's links with the Pacific nations are longstanding. We are bound to the region by geography and history. We have a common interest in regional cooperation to address issues of sustainable development, conservation and environmental protection and resource management. Proximity has also meant that Australia has long been a source of imported goods and services. This trade has strengthened in recent years due to improved shipping links and the strong purchasing power of the US Dollar in the Australian market.

Another link with the region is the newly established Australian satellite TV service, known as ABC Asia Pacific. It is transmitted via the PAS 8 satellite and is being rebroadcast by cable operators . The weekly program guide is available on the website: abcasiapacific.com

I wish to pay particular tribute to Australian nationals who are working as advisers to the Government of the FSM on maritime surveillance and as volunteers contributing to the economic and social development of the country. They are doing a great job. I send to them and everyone else with some connection with Australia, my best wishes for Australia Day.


For further information on this release, please contact:

FSM Office of the President
Public Information: Press, Radio, Video
P.O Box 34
Palikir Station, Pohnpei, FM 96941
Tel.: (691) 320-2548/2092
Fax.: (691) 320-4356
e-mail: fsmpio@mail.fm
http://www.fsmpio.fm/