Lau Susuga i le Taitai o le sauniga
Ladies and Gentlemen
I note that there is only a small number of participants attending your annual meeting but I am also aware that each one of you, represents a cadre of professionals in your respective countries. Let me congratulate you for forming this regional association of engineers, a probable first for any profession in the Pacific.
We all have a limited number of engineers in our countries, so the value of a regional association lies in information sharing, knowledge exchange and development of requisite skills sets and experiences. And why can’t a good road design in Fiji be used somewhere else?
Engineers are important to developing economies as there is a great reliance of government administrations on your profession, to design and build sustainable and resilient infrastructure, to better serve our communities and people and ensure their safety and security.
I would urge you to promote improvements in design and construction to suit our changing environments and to provide adaptation to impacts of climate change. Share good practices and lessons learnt from each other’s experiences so that the same mistakes are not repeated. Encourage good governance and work ethics as governments depend on you to implement quality development initiatives.
I have learnt that SPEA was first formed in Apia in 2010. I am pleased that you have also established a secretariat and registered your association in Samoa. Our government will support you in whatever measures are needed to strengthen your services, just as we have given you space within our administration’s infrastructure, as we have done to the few professional bodies that have set up office in Apia.
I hope you will have fruitful discussions and I encourage you to venture out of Apia and see a bit more of our home.
I now declare your meeting open.