Seven Pacific Islands groups are banding together to preserve and develop their traditions of ocean voyaging by double-hulled canoe.
The joint effort follows an agreement in Auckland last month to form the group Pacific Voyagers, a pan-Pacific network of voyaging societies.
The Pacific Voyagers includes members from American Samoa, the Cook Islands, Fiji, New Zealand, Tahiti, Tonga and Samoa.
The parties within the network have agreed to construct canoe hulls and operating infrastructure with designs based on traditional concepts.
Their aim is to assemble a fleet of seven ocean-worthy canoes in Rarotonga in the Cook Islands in April next year.
The Pacific Voyagers network project has won funding from Okeanos foundation, an international philanthropic organisation, which aims to protect the ocean environment and marine life.