ICDP welcomes Pacific Connect Network Dialogue participants with a reception

Following the opening of the Pacific Connect Network Dialogue in Nuku’alofa, the International Centre for Democratic Partnerships (ICDP) of Australia hosted a welcoming reception for the participants last night at Ancient Tonga.

The reception was attended by the Minister for Education and Training, Hon Siaosi Sovaleni along with other government officials.

Hon. Sovaleni said the workshop is part of International Centre for Democratic Partnership’s ongoing series of regional Pacific Connect Network Dialogues, launched in 2018, to bring people together to build networking, forge new relationships and collaborate to address common challenges.

“Even with the amazing technologies that we have and enjoy, great as they are, people drive development and technology is just a tool. A key factor in people-centred development, is people-to-people exchange. And I understand that this ‘Second Track’ process, encourages this and promotes fresh thinking and the development of concrete solutions.”

He said this joint collective effort and actions support Tonga’s national development priorities and strategies as the most effective response to receiving support from the international community.

“I would like to thank the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade for supporting the first two years of operation that has generated several practical projects in Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Samoa, Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands. And to these are solutions that are largely due to participants of these Dialogues.”

“This Tongan Dialogue will empower and encourage you leaders/entrepreneurs from the Pacific and Australia to work together and identify opportunities for collaboration under the theme of ‘Australia-Pacific Connections for a Digital Future.’”

Hon. Sovaleni said this is a way to look at opportunities with a united voice, in particular, the promoting e-literacy especially in schools that citizens become a good e-Citizens.

“To raise awareness of our leaders in the use of ICT as its hard effective regulates and legislates what they don’t understand. Don’t reinvent the wheel. I am sure others have face similar challenges. Why it’s important to have these dialogues. Finding solutions to some of our difficulties facing key economic sectors – e-Agriculture (blockchain in supply chain), e-Commerce, e-Fisheries (traceability), e-Education (learning tools, online resources, management tools).”

The Pacific Connect Network Dialogue concludes today.

This press release was provided by the Ministry of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change & Communications of the Government of Tonga