PACIFIC designers are a force to be reckoned with in the world fashion industry.
This is the opinion of the head of delegation of the European Union for the Pacific, Andrew Jacobs, at the opening night of the MHCC Fiji Fashion Week in Suva on Thursday.
Mr Jacobs said he was delighted to be at the sell-out event, the first fashion show he had ever attended.
"I will take a message back to Europe to watch out that the Pacific is on its way," he said.
"The quality shown can really drive the Pacific forward. They need to be promoted in schools, businesses and drive new technologies that will empower people and improve their lives."
He said the Pacific vibrancy and creativity stood out in the Vodafone Echoes of the Pacific show.
"It shows just how much the Pacific is getting it right. They have so much to offer in fashion and design and the rest of the world is getting ready to embrace the Pacific designers."
He encouraged Pacific designers and the governments to invest more in the fashion industry.
"Fashion business is a real driver of economic growth — creating jobs, encouraging innovation and broadening horizons around the Pacific. Not only in towns in the Pacific countries, but also rural areas where age-old traditions and designs can be shown to enrich the fashions of today."
The MHCC FJFW show ends tonight.