Government of the Federated States of Micronesia

FSM Present at PACER-Plus Meetings in Brisbane

Palikir, Pohnpei (FSM Information Services): October 26, 2009 - (FSM Department of Resources and Development) A Special Forum Trade Officials Meeting (FTOM) and Forum Trade Ministers Meeting (FTMM) were held in Brisbane, Australia from 22-24 October 2009. Attending this meeting from the FSM were Secretary Peter M. Christian, FSM Department of Resources and Development, Ernest Weirlangt, Assistant Secretary for Trade and Investment, and James Movick, Advisor.

The objective of these meetings was to engage discussions on the Pacific Agreement of Closer Economic Relations (PACER-Plus) between Forum Island Countries (FICs) and Australia and New Zealand. Participants focused on the appointment of the Chief Trade Advisor (CTA) and the establishment of the Office of the CTA to assist (FICs) in the course of these negotiations, the determination of the framework for the PACER-Plus negotiations, including the timelines, issues relating to PACER-Plus arrangements, issues in respect of which the CTA could negotiate.

Trade Officials also discussed preparatory work to be undertaken prior to commencement of substantial PACER-Plus negotiations. This includes consultations and engagement with Non-State Actors, national studies and consultations with traditional trade partners.

Although PACER-Plus will result in the liberalization of substantially all trade between FSM and other FICs and Australia and New Zealand; it is intended to be more than a free trade agreement. It is anticipated that PACER-Plus will cover development issues including trade facilitation and promotion, capacity building, fiscal and structural adjustment, labor mobility, and support to regional and sub regional integration.

The decision to launch PACER-Plus negotiations goes back to the Forum Leaders' Decision during their August 2009 Meeting in Cairns, upon recommendation of Forum Trade Ministers.

For more information, please contact the FSM Department of Resources and Development (Division of Trade and Investment) at telephone number (691) 320-5133.

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