Deputy Prime Minister, Fonotoe Pierre Lauofo, is back in the country after leading a delegation in Auckland, New Zealand.
Samoa’s delegation attended the Regional Airlinks Project – Partners initial meeting held in New Zealand last week.
The meeting was spearheaded by the Air Tahiti Nui airline where representatives from the Cook Islands and Samoa were invited.
The agenda included discussions regarding the way forward for the airline’s Regional Airlinks Project and targeting deals with big markets in the northern Pacific region.
Fonotoe and his delegation met with French Polynesia President Eduard Fritch to discuss the next step of a Memorandum of Understanding signed between Polynesian Airlines and Air Tahiti Nui for flights to, from and beyond Samoa.
The M.O.U between Polynesian Airlines and Air Tahiti Nui was signed towards the end of last year and was announced by Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi.
Hailing the agreement as a “historic achievement,” Prime Minister Tuilaepa said the deal reflects the true spirit of Polynesian cooperation and brotherhood.
“It is in line with the Polynesian Leaders Group’s vision of connecting all Polynesian countries with the larger metropolitan centres, with which much of our trade occurs,” he said. “Air services are vital for Polynesian countries and this is an excellent opportunity to showcase what we have to offer.” For Samoa, Tuilaepa said the relationship with Tahiti “opens Samoa up to Asia, North America and Europe directly”.