THE Japanese Government has stepped forward to assist the Pacific by establishing regional training programs over the next three years with a total aid package of $US1.3million ($F2.48m).
While closing the Second Summit of the Pacific Islands Development Forum in Nadi, Prime Minister Rear Admiral (Ret) Voreqe Bainimarama said the initial amount would be provided to the Public Service Commission in Fiji to establish capacity building programs for Kiribati and Tuvalu.
"These training courses — lasting up to a month — will be conducted by Fijian personnel and be designed for the specific needs of the people of Kiribati and Tuvalu," he said.
"And the great thing is that this is just the start.
"Japan and Fiji share a long-term vision to offer similar programs in all the PIDF countries."
He said these included human resource training for senior and middle management, communications and writing courses, IT refresher courses and a broad range of technical courses.
"The technical courses will teach practical skills and be tailored to specific needs.
"They include such things as marine electrical engineering, automotive maintenance, solar farm maintenance and medical attachments."
Rear Admiral (Ret) Bainimarama said this program was a great honour for Fiji.
"It recognises our leadership in the region and the skills set of our people and it recognises the empathy we have with our neighbours and our desire to work with them closely to raise their own living standards."