Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Premier Dalton Tagelagi signed a new Statement of Partnership between Aotearoa New Zealand and Niue during talks in Wellington, today.
The leaders reaffirmed the close friendship, forged through shared people and constitutional ties. The new Statement of Partnership reflects our long-term cooperation on priority areas such as climate change, economic resilience and improved prosperity and the preservation of Niue’s culture and language. The statement also highlights areas of renewed cooperation arising from the pandemic, notably support for the health response and Niue’s economic recovery.
The Statement emphasises New Zealand and Niue’s shared commitment to working together through the Pacific Islands Forum. At the 51st Pacific Islands Forum Leader’ Retreat last week , Pacific Leaders adopted the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent, which sets an ambitious vision for the region’s social, cultural, environmental and economic integrity, sovereignty and security.
“Niue and Aotearoa New Zealand share deep whakapapa connections and our bonds remain strong. My talks with Premier Tagelagi were warm we were able to exchange views on issues of importance for both our countries,” Jacinda Ardern said.
“This includes a shared commitment to our Blue Pacific Continent – Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa – and to responding to Niue’s efforts to adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change.
“New Zealand has committed $1.3 billion to climate finance development support, including both adaptation and mitigation. With at least half of that money going to the Pacific we anticipate projects important to Niue will be funded.
“We also discussed our vision for a peaceful, secure, prosperous and resilient region, and the importance of the Pacific working together including through the Pacific Islands Forum to meet regional and global challenges.
“I also want to acknowledge Niue on its success in remaining COVID-19 free for two years and for its management of recent cases. Niue’s enviable vaccination rates, with more than 93 percent of those eligible boosted, will be crucial as they continue to respond to the pandemic.
“Aotearoa New Zealand has supported Niue since the outset of the pandemic through critical economic assistance, and health and border policy advice, and we stand ready to provide on-going support to Niue if requested,” Jacinda Ardern said.
Niue’s Premier Dalton Tagelagi said the official visit to New Zealand and the signing of the Statement of Partnership marks a historic watershed moment in the relationship between both countries.
“Our friendship has stood the test of time – it will soon be 50 years since Niue began its status as a self-governing state in free association with New Zealand.
“Today is about celebrating the respect and thanks we have for the understanding and support provided by New Zealand for Niue to grow and develop as an independent island nation. The Statement of Partnership reaffirms the vision of our leaders under the Niue Constitution in 1974, and the continued obligation of support and assistance from New Zealand to Niue” Premier Tagelagi said.
Premier Tagelagi notes that the challenges of the pandemic and climate change continue to place significant demands on Niue but that the small island nation is learning to adapt.
“New Zealand’s and Prime Minister Ardern’s leadership have been an inspiration for the people of Niue with regard to how to manage COVID-19, climate change and global geopolitics.
“Niue is keen to provide regional leadership in the Pacific through our desire to protect our environment with the development of our unique Ocean Conservation Credit, a sovereign asset that can be invested in to benefit everyone,” Premier Tagelagi said.