A Marshall Islands strategy paper for five years of Europen Union funding has been approved by authorities in Brussels, paving the way for the flow of funding once all EU nations complete the formal ratification of the new Cotonou Agreement early next year.
The agreement with the EU is expected to lead to at least four and a half million US dollars in funding for the Marshalls through to the year 2007.
A large portion of that money is expected to be used to provide solar power equipment for remote outer islands.
Another 15 per cent of the funds will be apportioned to the work of various NGOs.
This will be the first-ever EU funding for the Marshall Islands which is one of six new Pacific members of the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific grouping of the EU.