Jacinda Ardern is a whisky woman and clearly prefers the refinement of a Scottish distillery than the beating of a kava root to produce a muddy looking water that's expected to be consumed.

But the Prime Minister did in Suva what the Fijians do, she imbibed the water. She took a sip, and then skulled it.

It was morning tea but the kava ceremony is a revered tradition at any time, even if the product can cause the mouth to swell, which sounded as though it worked when she came to thank the Fijian Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama for the impressive welcome ceremony.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's visit to Fiji comes during the 50th anniversary of Fiji's independence.

Recovered, Ardern went about the duties expected of her which included a formal one-on -one meeting with Bainimarama. The pair get on well, to the extent that Ardern not only invited, but pressed the Fijian leader to formally visit New Zealand, not at a time when the All Blacks are playing Australia because he apparently supports the wrong side.


Bainimarama not only avoids the media like the plague here, he treats them like it.

It seemed a little coincidental then when he made a statement to the media and the audio recording system failed, including the speaker. When it was Ardern's turn, the speaker miraculously sprang to life which at least allowed some audio to be extracted.

Bainimarama, who doesn't take questions, appeared quite relaxed.

A state dinner last night wrapped up the state side of the visit.

Ardern will spend today on things close to her heart, starting with women in politics. Fiji's Parliament is made up of 20 per cent women and she'd like to see that built on around the Pacific with, it would seem, the support of Bainimarama.

She will also address a women's leaders' lunch at the New Zealand High Commission residence.

Jacinda Ardern and Fijian PM Frank Bainimarama gave joint press conference outlining cooperation between the two nations across many areas. Video / Supplied

Fresh from fielding questions about New Zealand child poverty statistics, she will see real poverty and housing deprivation and what Fiji's doing about it. It's not quite on the scale of KiwiBuild but the project is at least well underway.

Tonight Ardern flies to Nadi and tomorrow will pay her respects at a mosque in nearby Lautoka, a sugar town. Three members of the Lautoka community died in the Christchurch attacks almost a year ago.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern paid her respects to fallen soldiers at the Fiji War Memorial in Suva. Photo / supplied
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern paid her respects to fallen soldiers at the Fiji War Memorial in Suva. Photo / supplied

Later tomorrow Ardern leaves for Sydney and a meeting on Friday with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

Bainimarama has urged Ardern to take the lead on climate change but she's not about to lay down the law to Australia which exports enough coal every year to swallow New Zealand's carbon emissions ten times over.

She says the New Zealand's view has been made known at the Pacific Islands Forum and Ardern says the suggestion that Morrison doesn't know it is wrong.

Just as he knows her view on the deportation of criminals to our country, he ignores it.