Foreign Ministers of Fiji and Turkey Meet in Istanbul
Foreign Minister Ratu Inoke Kubuabola met his Turkish counterpart, Ahmet Davutoglu, for bilateral discussions in Istanbul today. Minister Kubuabola is in Turkey at the invitation of the Turkish Foreign Minister for the Turkey-Pacific Small Islands Developing States (PSIDS) Foreign Ministers Meeting.
The Ministers discussed Turkey's new development assistance programme for the PSIDS, with Minister Davutoglu inviting Fiji to present Turkey with Fiji's preferred small to medium project to benefit from this programme. Minister Kubuabola thanked Turkey for its growing commitment to the development of the PSIDS region. He also thanked the Minister for Turkish projects in Fiji over the last 3 years, in particular the Buca mini-hydro project, medical equipment for hospitals, and assistance with the forthcoming elections.
Minister Kubuabola said that Fiji greatly appreciated Turkey's interest in the development of the Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF) and the material assistance provided to PIDF's Secretariat. Minister Davutoglu confirmed that Turkey will be represented at the PIDF Summit in Nadi this month by a senior member of the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and a delegation from the Turkish International Development Assistance Agency.
At this morning Turkey-PSIDS Foreign Minister's Meeting, the Turkish Foreign Minister expressed concern over the effects of rising sea levels on the PSIDS and offered to provide any assistance possible to assist those countries being acutely affected. The Minister spoke about Turkish readiness to provide assistance in capacity building for disaster preparedness and risk management, as well as the provision of scholarships for Fiji nationals in Turkish universities.
The Turkey-PSIDS Foreign Ministers Meeting agreed upon a Bosphorus Declaration which amongst other things includes mention of Turkey's decision to open an embassy in the PSIDS region in the near future. The declaration also includes an offer by Turkey to provide office facilities for PSIDS in Turkey to enable PSIDS to have representation in Turkey.