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United Nation Global Conference 2014 In Samoa

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Picture by David Kirkland

The United Nation Global Conference is Starting September 1 – 4 with. Other important conferences will start already on August 25.

It is historical because it will be the first time the S.I.D.S. global conference will be hosted in the Pacific. The first was in Barbados 1994 and the second in Mauritius 2005.

Hosting the S.I.D.S. conference will mean all 193 member countries of the U.N. will send representatives to Samoa.

That’s an estimated 3,000 delegates, not including media and support personnel.

And even though Samoa will not have enough hotel rooms to cater for such a big conference, PM Tuilaepa lobbied and got his way at the Rio+20 conference held in Brazil, in June last year.

His agenda for lobbying and winning hosting rights to the conference are many but there are three main goals.

In an exclusive interview with the Sunday Samoan in Auckland, New Zealand last week, he outlined the three goals in why he fought so hard to win. One of the goals he said is that the conference will showcase Samoa as the Pacific destination for hosting large-scale international meetings.

If the preparations and hosting of the 2014 event are done successfully, the increased profile will raise the country’s international appeal and make it easier to leverage its tourism industry.

Success is crucial because in 2015, Samoa will also host the Commonwealth Youth Games. Both events will use the sports facilities at the Tuanaimato complex.

“All the preparation and hosting of this meeting will be utilized for the Commonwealth Youth Games in 2015,” he said. “My aim is that when these two big events have been done, it will showcase to the world that Samoa can host any size meeting.”

According to Tuilaepa, 80 to 90 per cent of meetings currently hosted by the country are small to medium, “which are usually below a thousand people and uses between 200 to 300 rooms. We’ve shown we can do those no problems.

“But we have avoided these big meetings in the past unless they are of exceptional importance, like this one [S.I.D.S. Global conference]. So now that we’ve got it, we must now go all out to make it a success.”

Samoa Observer