The headquarters of the Pacific Immigration Director’s Conference (P.I.D.C) will soon be relocated from Fiji to Samoa.
An agreement on the establishment of the Office on Level 5 of the government building was signed yesterday.
This formalises the agreement to relocate the office from Suva to Apia.
Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi signed the agreement with P.I.D.C’s representatives Vaosa Epa and Damien Jacklick.
Tuilaepa highlighted the importance of the P.I.D.C.
“With the increase of illegal activities in the horizon relating to people movement as well as drugs and arms smuggling, there is an imperative need for immigration authorities in the region to engage to manage the Pacific gateways to ensure the safety of borders, thereby contributing to broader regional objectives…” he said.
By hosting the P.I.D.C headquarters, Tuilaepa said this reflects Samoa’s commitment to fostering multilateral cooperation within the members.
“The government and the people of Samoa welcome the P.I.D.C to our shores and is evident by the swift execution of the necessary documents to facilitate a smooth transition from Suva to Apia,” he said.
Vice Chair of the P.I.D.C, Damien Jacklick in response acknowledged the support from the government of Samoa and also the Prime Minister.
“Your support and approval on the relocation signifies the values of our relationship and in recognition of the role that P.I.D.C plays in bringing together states and territories of the Pacific towards the common interest of protecting our borders,” he said.
“Today marks a significant chapter in the organization’s short history and the culmination of a journey that we value and respect.
“It also marks a new journey as we sail on the va’a name P.I.D.C together into unchartered waters.
“Today’s headquarter agreement signing signifies unity and we are grateful and welcome very much your government’s commitment to support this regional effort.”