17 Aug 2002

Marshall Islands Compact negotiators leave for Washington

8:33 am on 17 August 2002

Marshall Islands negotiators fly to Washington D.C this weekend to discuss the future of the compact deal between the nation and the United States.

The major sticking points remain the level of funding the Marshalls should receive from the US for the next 20 years, and the Free Association pact between the countries.

At present the Marshalls receive over forty million US dollars a year from the US, with the US proposing 33 point 9 million in grants and seven million for a trust fund, per year, in the future.

The Marshalls want 36 point 6 million in grants and 12 million for the trustfund.

Also at issue is the form of the Compact of Free Association between the two countries.

The US wants to renegotiate the longstanding arrangement.

But, the Marshall's President Kessai Note says the country is proud of the arrangement and does not want to see it watered down.