17 Jul 2013

Broad benefits seen in Pacific Partnership mission

3:29 pm on 17 July 2013

The New Zealand Defence Force says regular missions to the Pacific are helping it prepare for humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and gain cultural awareness.

The Pacific Partnership undertakes regular missions in the Pacific and Asia area to build up national capacities to deal with natural disaster.

The US, Australian and New Zealand partnership is currently in Kiribati, working on strengthening infrastructure and awareness of natural disasters.

Major Alistair Mitchell from the New Zealand Army says any improvement they can make to government services will help improve the quality of life for local people.

And he says the benefits of such missions go both ways.

"A lot of the activity is designed or initiated in order that we practise working in the Pacific and deploying in case we need to do that in a short notice situation, practising our mobilisation and deployment into a relatively remote location. It's an excellent opportunity for us to gain cultural awareness and build links up with the local population here."

Major Alistair Mitchell from the New Zealand Army.