A high level delegation from Thailand is in Samoa to explore potential trade and investment opportunities with members of the local community.
Among the groups they have met with is the Samoa Association of Manufacturers and Exporters (S.A.M.E).
On Tuesday, the group met with S.A.M.E’s President, Tautaituasivi Tagaloa Wilson and member companies. They discussed trade opportunities, private sector cooperation, investment opportunities and private sector development.
The Thailand delegation is led by Ambassador Maris Sangiampongsa. Samoa’s Ambassador to New Zealand, Leasi Tommy Scanlan was also present during the meeting.
Thailand hosted a six S.A.M.E member delegation last year where they visited various manufacturing and export enterprises there.
President Tautaituasivi said one of the initiatives S.A.M.E launched following the visit to Thailand was the development of the S.A.M.E-Samoa Export Plan 2016-2020, which was launched in December 2016.
The Export Plan highlighted key areas the Samoa Exporters will be targeting – including Fisheries/Agriculture Export value added items; Export Services .
The Thailand delegation requested from S.A.M.E champion products and companies- that Thailand can assist through Technical assistance.
The S.A.M.E President- pointed to the Samoa Export plan- as the connection between Samoan Exporters and 80% of the Samoan population which by and large depend on the land & sea for their livelihoods.
S.A.M.E’s membership has an increasing interest in learning from trade and private sector developments in Thailand, especially in the areas trade, export development, agro-tourism and Investment.
Opportunities to link exporters to other countries in the Pacific to grow their markets and attract interest from Asian Investors were also discussed.
A leading Thailand manufacturer and export of biodegradable plastics also made a presentation to the Samoan exporters and gained significant interest in the use of biodegradable packaging for all locally manufactured products going into the future.