18 Jan 2012

Kiribati's Tong to focus on building economy in final term

7:18 am on 18 January 2012

The newly re-elected president of Kiribati says building a stronger economy will be his government's focus for this term.

Anote Tong won his third and final term as president, with just over 40% of the vote, beating his nearest challenger, Tetaua Taitai by more than 2,000 votes.

Mr Tong says Kiribati's fisheries resource is substantial, but the country has been unable to get a significant share of it.

"We need a stronger coalition with our Pacific partners in advocating that the resource is ours, so we should be able to get a larger share. At the moment, much of the harvesting, much of the processing is actually done offshore, and other countries are actually benefitting out of this. So we must be able to domesticate the industry to a greater extent than has been the case."

Anote Tong says the Government is trying to develop the skills of young people, through the Marine Training Centre, and the Technical Institute.