WikiLeaks cable: NZ priorities at Pacific Islands Forum

This is one of the diplomatic cables about New Zealand held by Wikileaks.

3 October, 2005
SUBJECT: NEW ZEALAND PRIORITIES AT PACIFIC ISLANDS FORUM

This record is a partial extract of the original cable.
The full text of the original cable is not available.

Classified By: Charge D'Affaires David R. Burnett, for reasons 1.4(b) and (d).

1. (C) New Zealand,s principal priority for the leaders'
meeting of the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) is finalizing the
Pacific Plan, in which New Zealand is seeking support of a
process of regional integration and cooperation and movement
away from patron-client relationships between developed and
developing members. The government,s other priorities
include encouraging free trade and raising awareness of the
threat of an avian flu pandemic.

2. (C) Poloff met September 27 with Niels Holm, Regional
Deputy Director, Pacific Division, Ministry of Foreign
Affairs and Trade (MFAT), to discuss New Zealand's priorities
for the PIF,s October meeting. In addition to finalizing
the Pacific Plan, Holm said his government hopes to promote
regional trade.

As part of that effort, GNZ has been
monitoring negotiations between Forum Island Countries (FICs)
and the European Union on Economic Partnership Agreements.
While not opposing such agreements, GNZ seeks at least
equally favorable trade treatment if agreements are reached.

3. (SBU) New Zealand,s additional priorities include
maintaining support for the Regional Assistance Mission to
the Solomon Islands (RAMSI) and raising awareness of avian
influenza in the Pacific. FICs have no practical action plan
to address the possibility of avian flu, Holm said, although
there are general guidelines provided through the Secretariat
of the Pacific Community.

4. (C) Holm reported that Italy and Israel have expressed
interest in attending the Post Forum Dialogue. While the GNZ
does not oppose their attendance, it will not advocate their
participation.

5. (C) Prime Minister Helen Clark and whoever is the Foreign
Minister will likely attend the meeting, Holm indicated.
With PM Clark now working on forming a new government in the
wake of September 17 elections, cabinet assignments are up in
the air. There is a strong possibility that current Foreign
Minister Phil Goff will be replaced as he takes on an
increasingly domestic portfolio.

Burnett

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