The Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration, Hon. Mark Brown met virtually last night with his counterpart, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to talk forward bilateral co-operation. This year marks 25 years diplomatic relations between the two countries and last night’s discussions followed discussions held earlier this year during the visit of the PRC’s Ambassador to the Cook Islands Wang Xialong.
Infrastructure development has been the hallmark of bilateral co-operation between the PRC and the Cook Islands over the last 25 years, with the completion of notable public infrastructure including the Courthouse and Ministry of Justice, National Police Headquarters, Ministry of Education, Rarotonga’s Water Ringmain and Apii Nikao.
In line with the Cook Islands economic and social advances over the last decade, coupled with greater diversification in its international engagements, last night’s discussions covered forward co-operation relating to the Cook Islands forward economic recovery agenda and regional priorities including climate change resilience, health and transport.
I welcomed the opportunity to meet with Minister Wang and have an exchange on a wide range of topics including our forward bilateral co-operation agenda; regional affairs and greater people to people links,” said Prime Minister Brown. “We’ve 25 years of co-operation with the PRC which has supported our economic and social transformation during that time. We’re now confronted with an economic recovery endeavour that puts at risk a decade of economic gain. That endeavour requires of the Cook Islands proactive international engagement with partners who appreciate our unique vulnerabilities, have a preparedness to be innovative in development finance support and committed to a secure and prosperous Cook Islands and Pacific. I was encouraged by the PRCs intentions as relayed by Minister Wang relating to supporting the Cook Islands and Pacific recovery endeavour and look forward to working closely with the PRC and all our partners in the months ahead to bring such co-operation to fruition.”
Minister Wang Yi is currently on a ten-day, eight nation Pacific tour that included stops in Fiji, Kiribati, Samoa, Tonga, Vanuatu and Timor-Leste.
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