South Pacific Private Sector Development gets a Boost

  • Don McKinnon
Foreign Affairs and Trade

Private Sector Development in the Pacific Islands received a boost today with the Foreign Minister, Don McKinnon, announcing 18 new training and business development grants.

The grants, totalling NZ$637,587, are made under the Pacific Islands Investment & Development Scheme (PIIDS), part of New Zealand's Official Development Assistance (NZODA) programme. They cover private sector activities in five countries.

"These grants are part of a programme to promote more effective business and training links between the private sector in New Zealand and in the South Pacific," Mr McKinnon said.

"This is an innovative, forward-looking use of our ODA funding, which provides an opportunity for the New Zealand private sector to make a positive contribution to the economic development of our region."

The total 1997/98 PIIDs allocation is $2 million. In the October bidding round (there have been three rounds this year) 31 proposals were submitted. Grants were allocated according to each proposal's development value, commercial viability and the likely long-term economic and employment benefits for the recipient country.

Proposals for the next round of PIIDS grants should be sent to the Development Cooperation Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade by 27 February 1998.