Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma outlines new areas of Commonwealth assistance and support to Kiribati after his recent visit…
Kiribati is a highly valued member of the Commonwealth. The purpose of my first official visit to Kiribati was to have direct exchanges with the leadership as to the country’s priorities, the challenges it faces, and to identify the partnership which the Commonwealth can offer.
I was honoured to be received so warmly during my visit, and I depart with great appreciation and a deeper understanding of Kiribati’s aspirations and the challenges posed by geography, human and natural resource constraints, and climate change.
My discussions covered many areas of the Commonwealth’s work as a trusted and collaborative partner in advancing our core values of democracy, development and respect for diversity.
During this visit, I had the honour of calling on the President, HE Anote Tong, and Vice-President and Minister of Internal and Social Affairs Hon Teima Onorio. I also met the Minister of Communication, Transport and Tourism Development Hon Taberannang Timeon; Minister of Public Works and Utilities Hon Kirabuke Teiaua; Minister of Commerce, Industries and Co-operatives Hon Pinto Katia; and Minister of Environment and Agricultural Development Hon Tiarite Kwong.
I also had meetings with former President Hon Teburoro Tito, and the Speaker of the House of Assembly Hon Taomati Iuta.