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Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs to visit Fiji and Tuvalu.



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MEDIA RELEASE PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY TO THE MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS THE HON CHRIS GALLUS MP

AA 03 068 30 September 2003

Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs to visit Fiji and Tuvalu

The Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Mrs Chris Gallus, will represent the Prime Minister this week on the tiny Pacific island nation of Tuvalu at celebrations to mark 25 years of independence. Mrs Gallus will also visit Fiji to examine aid projects.

In Tuvalu, Mrs Gallus will attend celebrations in the capital Funafuti tomorrow (1 October), meet with the Prime Minister of Tuvalu, and examine the impact of Australian aid projects.

Australia is working closely with the Tuvalu Government to help increase the country's skill base and improve management of resources, which includes the establishment of the Tuvalu Trust Fund.

In Fiji Mrs Gallus will visit Australian aid programs, including a Save the Children project and the Women's Crisis Centre, and give a talk about governance in the Pacific at the University of the South Pacific.

Mrs Gallus said it was important for Australia to show support for countries in the Pacific.

In Fiji, the Australian Government's aid program is providing an estimated $20 million to improve health and education, law and justice.

Further information on Australian Government aid to Tuvalu and Fiji can be obtained from the AusAID website: www.ausaid.gov.au

Media contacts: Shane Fairlie (Office of Mrs Gallus) 0408 680 442 or 02 6277 4840 Jo Elsom (AusAID) 02 6206 4960 or 0412 804 489