United States congressmen in a first ever “Congressional Pacific Islands Caucus”, re-introduced a bill calling for long-term U.S engagement in the Pacific called Pacific Act or Blue Pacific Act.
The bill is said to be a “Comprehensive, Long-term, Foreign Policy in the Pacific Islands Amidst Growing International Engagement in the Region”.
The introducers are Congressman Ed Case (D-HI), Congressman Don Young (R-AK), Congresswoman Ami Bera(D-CA) and Brad Sherman (D-CA).
The bill is said to “expand U.S. diplomatic and development presence in the Pacific, increases U.S. security cooperation and assistance to address regional maritime security, transnational crime and law enforcement issues, including Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing, deepens and diversifies bilateral and multilateral trade between U.S. and the region, supports regional economic and social development, ..builds on regional institutions and frameworks, promotes shared values like press freedom and gender equality and strengthens people to people relationships and civil societies.”
The bill is supported by Pacific leaders including President David Panuelo of the Federated States of Micronesia, Ambassador Hersey Kyota of the Republic of Palau, Ambassador Arthur Sinodinos AO of Australia, Ambassador Koji Tomita of Japan, Ambassador Gerald Zackios of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Ambassador Rosemary Banks of New Zealand, Mr. Cephas Kayo, charge d’ affairs, of Papua New Guinea and Representive Bi-khim Hsiao of Taiwan.
“The Blue Pacific Act gives Palau and the rest of the Pacific island nations hope for a safe, accessible, and free Pacific. It is in line with the U.S. Indo-Pacific Strategy,” stated Ambassador Hersey Kyota of the Republic of Palau to the United States.
Marshall Ambassador Gerald Zackios said “The bill touches upon important issues the region is facing today; the integrity of our ocean resources, the existential threat of climate change, coping with natural disasters, trade, critical infrastructure needs, healthcare, education and much more.”
“As a Pacific nation, the United States can and must contribute to regional efforts to address these issues. In naming and re-introducing this bill, we pay tribute to the Blue Pacific vision pioneered by the Pacific Island leaders and reaffirm our commitment to the region once again,” Congressman Ed Case (D-HI), Co-chair and co-founder in the 116th congress first -ever Congressional Pacific Islands Caucus. (By: L.N. Reklai)

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