Prime Minister Honourable Sitiveni Rabuka met with his Tongan counterpart Honourable Hu’akavemeiliku Siaosi Sovaleni on the margins of the Pacific Islands Forum Special Leaders Meeting at Sheraton Fiji Golf and Beach Resort in Nadi.
During the meeting, Prime Minister Rabuka said that Fiji places great importance on its relations with the Kingdom of Tonga as our historical and cultural link is deeply entrenched, going back centuries, well before our formal diplomatic relations was established.
Our bilateral relations, he added, has grown over the years through the contributions of the Tongan diaspora and communities in Fiji and vice-versa.
In saying this, Prime Minister Rabuka highlighted that Fiji is keen to explore new avenues of engagement and to strengthen our cooperation in different areas including defence, education, climate change, oceans and trade, to mention a few.
The Head of the People’s Coalition Government also revisited discussions on the establishment of the Tongan High Commission planned to be established in Suva.
Speaking on issues of the Pacific Islands Forum, Prime Minister Rabuka highlighted that PIF member states must continue to look for opportunities to strengthen relations within the Forum, adding this would be best achieved through frequent face-face engagements as is the “Pacific Way”.
He thanked the Tongan Prime Minister for reaffirming and renewing our relations, and looks forward to elevating our relations further.
Prime Minister Hu’akavemeiliku also conveyed his appreciation to his Fiji counterpart, adding they look forward to working closely with our country and to explore potential areas of opportunities.