21 Jan 2008

Italy proposes summit with Pacific, pledges more aid

4:09 pm on 21 January 2008

The Italian Government has pledged to convene an Italy-Pacific Islands Forum towards the end of 2008.

The Italian Ambassador to Solomon Islands, Stefano Starace Janfolla, says the initiative is part of the ongoing interest of the Italian government in deepening bilateral relations with Pacific Island countries.

Mr Staraco said the Italy-Pacific summit would not only focus on political issues, but also on economic development and trade.

Ambassador Starace, who is based in Canberra, says his government's acceptance into the Post Forum Dialogue represents a significant stepping stone in increasing Italy's commitment to development and peace in the region.

He says his government will commit more than 11 million US dollars to development in the Pacific over the next three years.