Cook Islands to formally ratify Pacer Plus in June, Sport: PNG sailor takes dad's lead in pursuing Olympic dream, PACER deal will hurt Pacific, strengthen China - analyst, Samoa Parliament mourns death of first term MP, PNG Covid cases now at 843 after new spate of cases, Climate vulnerability assessment underway in Bougainville atolls, Councillor disgusted by comments over reo Māori karakia at Grey Power meeting, Trump pardons Steve Bannon, considers starting new political party, $24m flood protection and bridge project in Franz Josef under review, Iwi protesting Shelly Bay sale serve developer with trespass notice. The objective of the Agreement is to maximise opportunities for Forum Island Countries (FICs) to use trade and investment as engines of growth, to create jobs and ensure higher incomes and living standards. The trade deal known as Pacer Plus will have immediate benefits for the Cook Islands when it comes into force later this year, says the Cooks' deputy prime minister. This assistance is now being extended to PACER Plus parties: Kiribati, Cook Islands and Niue, along with existing support for Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Tonga, Samoa, Vanuatu and Solomon Islands. The broader regional economic picture PACER Plus is an agreement that has been sold as a positive development outcome for Pacific Island Countries (PICs). In contrast to previous trade agreements to which the Cook Islands is party, PACER Plus includes detailed provisions not only on trade in goods but also trade in services and investment, increasingly important areas of international trade. PACER Plus opened for signature on 14 June 2017, and has been signed by Australia, New Zealand and nine Pacific island countries (Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu). The 22 officers from Cook Islands, Kiribati, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Tonga, Niue, Nauru, Samoa, Solomon Islands who are participants of the training will receive updated technical information on PACER Plus Rules of Origin and its application. The Cook Islands is putting its ratification of the regional trade deal known as PACER Plus on hold. The Cook Islands is the eighth signatory of PACER Plus to ratify the Agreement, thus bringing the Agreement into force with the Cook Islands being one of the original parties. Pacer Plus set to come on stream later this year - Cooks Deputy PM. As with every Agreement, however, it will be up to us to take advantage of those opportunities in the months ahead.” Te Kauono Tutara e te Mana Tiaki – Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Immigration. Of great importance for the Cook Islands are the associated commitments of Australia and New Zealand to provide Aid-for-Trade assistance (AUD 25 million) to enable FIC parties to PACER Plus to build their capacities to be able to take advantage of opportunities that will become available under the Agreement. This comes as New Zealand last week became the first country to ratify the deal that has also been signed by nine Pacific countries and Australia. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the announcement that the Cook Islands is the eighth nation to ratify this landmark agreement. Cook Islands Ministry of Finance. After more than a decade of negotiations, the region's PACER Plus free trade deal is set to start on December the 13th. Eight countries have now ratified PACER Plus – Australia, Cook Islands, Kiribati, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Tonga. Cook Islands recently became the eighth country to ratify Pacer Plus, following Kiribati, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Australia. "PACER Plus will make trade easier for signatories to the agreement, which will grow jobs, boost sustainable economic growth and contribute to a safer and more prosperous Pacific," David Parker said. 9:35 am on 21 February 2020. Last October, the Cook Islands put its ratification on hold over fears it would miss out on economic assistance when it … The PACER Plus negotiations helped clarify that Pacific economies face unique hurdles to international trade. The remaining signatories yet to ratify are Nauru, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. PACER Plus negotiations began in 2009 and ended in 2017 with the Cook Islands and other Forum Members signing the Agreement at a special ceremony in Nuku’alofa, Tonga, on 14 June 2017. Launching of PACER PLUS Project November 14, 2019 The PACER PLUS Project for the Implementation of the Pacific Trade & Customs Harmonisation Project was officially launched on 14 th of November, 2019 in Honiara, Solomon Islands by the New Zealand High Commissioner to the Solomon Islands. The regional free trade agreement, PACER Plus, will come into force on December 13. The agreement expands the existing Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations (PACER) to include further trade liberalisation and development assistance. In PACER Plus there are broad clauses that require the Pacific to pass on any better treatment they give to a third-party to Australia and New Zealand as well. PACER Plus will enter into force on 13 December. In the third and final piece of a three-article series, Wesley Morgan calls for nations like Australia to cement the long-term relationship with its Pacific family and build a more integrated regional economy. By Rashneel Kumar RAROTONGA, Cook Islands (Cook Islands News, April 28, 2017) – The Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations (PACER) Plus deal is as much about development as it is about trade for the Cook Islands, says prime minister Henry Puna. PACER Plus is a free trade agreement between members of the Pacific Islands Forum (the Forum Island Countries plus Australia and New Zealand). The objective of the Agreement is to maximise opportunities for Forum Island Countries (FICs) to use trade and investment as engines of growth, to create jobs and ensure higher incomes and living standards. The Cook Islands is the eighth signatory of PACER Plus to ratify the Agreement, thus bringing the Agreement into force with the Cook Islands being one of the original parties. Cook Islands is the eighth signatory to PACER Plus, joining Australia, Kiribati, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Tonga. The eleven countries who have signed the PACER Plus Agreement are Australia, Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu, while eight have ratified the agreement. Cook Islands was the eighth country to ratify the agreement on 14 October 2020, triggering the 60-day countdown for PACER Plus to enter into force. Eight countries are Parties to the Agreement: Australia, Cook Islands, Kiribati, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Tonga. Cook Islands to ratify PACER Plus The PACER Plus trade deal is led by New Zealand and Australia and has nine Pacific Island signatories, but only Samoa has ratified it . Given the entry of PACER Plus into force it will now … PACER Plus is due to enter into force on 13 December 2020, and will mark the largest free trade agreement (FTA) to focus on trade amongst Pacific Island nations. The Cook Islands Finance Minister Mark Brown said the decision to hit pause on the … As with every Agreement, however, it will be up to us to take advantage of those opportunities in the months ahead.” In doing so, it has played a coordination role within Government in efforts to prepare for ratification, working closely with the Business Trade and Investment Board, the Crown Law Office, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Finance and Economic Management and others on various aspects of the Agreement. Prime Minister Mark Brown has today signed the Cook Islands’ Instrument of Ratification for the Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations Plus (PACER Plus) following completion of domestic processes and approval by Cabinet this morning. The Cook Islands Trade Portal is a trade facilitation platform implemented by the government of the Cook Islands, in the context of the PACER Plus agreement, with technical assistance from UNCTAD and funding from Australia and New Zealand Cook Islands was the eighth country to ratify PACER Plus, following Kiribati, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Australia. As with every Agreement, however, it will be up to us to take advantage of those opportunities in the months ahead.” For more information or queries contact MediaOCO@ocosec.org. Trade and prosperity in the Pacific will thrive following formal notification that Cook Islands is the eighth state to ratify the Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations Plus (PACER Plus), triggering its formal entry into force in 60 days. PACER Plus will only enter into force after eight of the signatory countries step in to ratify. ... Tonga, Solomon Islands, Niue and Cook Islands. The Cook Islands had put its ratification on hold because of fears it would miss out on development assistance, but Mark Brown says the deal will be ratified in June. PACER Plus covers trade in goods (rules of origin and verification procedures, customs procedures, biosecurity Pacific regional trade and development agreement PACER Plus will enter into force in 60 days now that the required eight countries have ratified it. Time and again, studies detailed the structural features that differentiate Pacific economies: small size, distance from markets, expensive transport links, a reliance on imports, and vulnerability to disasters (such as intense cyclones) and shocks (such as the COVID-19 pandemic). Prior to entry into force of the Agreement in December, MFAI will coordinate a final round of national consultations to explain key provisions of the Final Agreement and identify trade-related needs. 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