FIJI'S National Fire Authority (NFA) has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with the Jakarta fire service that is anticipated to enhance the authority's operational capability in fire and rescue service delivery.
The LOI was signed in Jakarta, Indonesia on Tuesday by NFA chairman Commander Francis Kean and Dr Paimin Napitupulu, the head of the Department of Fire and Disaster Handling Jakarta Capital City Government.
"This is a historical milestone achievement for the government of Fiji and the NFA in its efforts to bring about appropriate reforms into the NFA for the improvement and enhancement of fire and rescue service delivery to the people of Fiji," Mr Kean said.
"This LOI means the start of a new journey for NFA in fostering their partnership with the Jakarta Fire Service," he said.
"The establishment of this technical cooperation and assistance arrangement between our two organisations will not only enhance Fiji's fire service but foster partnership relations with Indonesia in the exchange of technical knowledge and skills, training and capacity building opportunities."
Cdr Kean acknowledged the assistance by the Indonesian government, the Indonesian Embassy in Fiji and the Fiji Embassy in Jakarta that led to the signing of the LOI.
He said the Framework for Development Cooperation Agreement signed by the two governments in Bali on May 27 last year paved the way for such partnership co-operation as part of the 'Look North' strategy to develop and enhance Fiji's essential services.
"NFA looks forward to working together with the Jakarta Fire Service and the government of Indonesia in the sharing of knowledge and skills that will contribute to the enhancement of NFA's operational capability into new and unprecedented levels," he added.
Dr Napitupulu said the LOI was also a historical achievement for the Jakarta Fire Service because it was its first bilateral engagement with a counterpart from the Pacific region.
He said he was positive there would be huge benefits to both parties as an outcome of this new partnership.
A statement from the NFA said the implementation of such co-operation would be done in appropriate measures with the eventual signing of a memorandum of understanding.
It also stated that there were discussions that could see NFA fire-fighters receive specialised training at the Jakarta Fire Training Institute, which the NFA looked forward to.