Melanesia Face to Face – a forum on the big issues facing Melanesia

The Pacific Institute of Public Policy is partnering with Masalai Communications  to host a public panel discussion forum on the big issues facing Melanesia at the National Research Institute (NRI) on Tuesday 18 October 2011.

It is nearly thirty years since Melanesian countries came together as a sub-regional political and economic alliance. Papua New Guinea, New Caledonia, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and Fiji constitute over three quarters of the population, land area and economy of the broader Pacific group of nations. In recent times the alliance has deepened and economic growth has increased.Once we had to reach out to the world. Now the world is coming to us. Are we ready to take advantage of this newfound position on the global stage? Are we doing enough to harness the potential of our population, resources and geography?

We share common challenges – providing our people with better access to jobs, housing, health and education. With rapidly growing, young urban populations how can we best meet the aspirations of our people?

A panel of distinguished leaders – including new Melanesian Spearhead Group Director General Peter Forau; Hon. Dame Carol Kidu DBE MP; Vanuatu’s Reserve Bank Governor Odo Tevi; Port Moresby Governor Hon. Powes Parkop; and Political Science & International Relations Graduate Solomon Kantha – will be on hand for a lively discussion on these questions and the search for a shared vision for the region.

The event is open to the public and the audience will be actively engaged in the discussion with the aim of canvassing a wide range of views and ideas.

If you are not in Port Moresby or cannot attend the event, please feel free to share your questions/comments for the panel on our Facebook page – facebook.com/pacificpolicy – and join the discussion there. We will present a selection of comments/questions received during the panel discussion.

*Melanesia Face to Face* will take place on Tuesday 18 October 2011 between 5.00-6.30 PM at the National Research Institute  (NRI).

The event is being filmed with the view to airing on regional TV networks and online – we will post more details about this soon.

The Pacific Institute of Public Policy (PiPP) is the leading independent think tank serving the Pacific islands community.

For more information please contact PiPP Senior Research Officer Anna Naemon on anaemon@pacificpolicy.org or +675 767 496 50 and Senior Communications Officer Talita Tu’ipulotu on ttuipulotu@pacificpolicy.org or +675 725 579 98