Prime Minister Ardern to Lead Delegation to Samoa on the 60th Anniversary of Friendship Treaty

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Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mata’afa, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, and the official party on Parliament grounds. Photo: Mark Mitchell.

Prime Minister of New Zealand Rt Hon Jacinda Ardern will lead a parliamentary and community delegation to Samoa from 1-2 August to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Friendship, between New Zealand and Samoa.

Prime Minister of Samoa Hon Fiame Naomi Mataafa extended the invitation to Prime Minister Ardern during her recent visit to Aotearoa.

Prime Minister Fiame gave a glimpse of the official programme for Ardern and her delegation which will begin with a traditional ava ceremony to welcome Samoa’s guests.

The delegation will meet with Cabinet to discuss areas of common interest and initiatives to strengthen the partnership and close ties between the two countries.

“The Prime Minister’s delegation includes Ministers of development areas for cooperation between New Zealand and Samoa,” said Fiame, “so a formal session with Cabinet will be hosted as part of the official program.”

Prime Minister Ardern says the trip builds on Prime Minister Fiame’s visit to New Zealand in June, “and provides another opportunity for us to reflect on our shared past and think ahead to a shared future”.

In 1962 Samoa became the first Pacific nation to achieve independence after more than 50 years of New Zealand’s administration. Two months later the Treaty of Friendship was signed on the 1st of August, committing both governments to working together to promote the welfare of the people of Samoa, and conduct the relationship in the spirit of close friendship.

The delegation to Samoa includes two Ministers of Samoa decent. NZ Minister of Arts, Culture and Heritage,Carmel Sepuloni, and Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio.

As has been the case during past visits of the New Zealand Government, the National party opposition leader, Christopher Luxon is also part of the delegation, as well as representatives from each political party in New Zealand’s Parliament.

The delegation also includes New Zealand and Pacific community and business leaders.

Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mata’afa, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, and the official party on Parliament grounds. Photo: Mark Mitchell.