Regional immigration organisation begins operations in Samoa

 

The signing of the Regional Immigration Organisation with the Samoan government

APIA, SAMOA – TUESDAY 23 AUGUST 2016: The Secretariat for the Pacific Immigration Directors’ Conference (PIDC) has begun operations in Apia to serve its Member Administrations made up of 19 Countries and Territories in the region.

The newly appointed Head of Secretariat, Maumalo Ioane Alama advised that the Secretariat staff had officially commenced operating out of Apia on 8 August 2016.

“As a regional organisation that has worked since 1996 to support members in strengthening   national immigration policies and enhancing national and regional border protection processes, the Secretariat is excited to begin working from its new base of operations in Samoa.  We plan to complete work on our new premises at the DBS Building in the next few months and will then look to formally launch our Organisation’s activities in Samoa. In the meantime, we would like to acknowledge the support provided by the Government of Samoa in providing temporary office space to accommodate the Secretariat and its activities.”

Damien Jacklick, current Chair for the PIDC and Head of Immigration for the Republic of the Marshall Islands advised that “PIDC Members are eager to see the establishment of the new Secretariat in Apia and look to moving forward as an organisation to develop activities and programmes that support Members given the ever increasing numbers of people travelling internationally within the region.”

The CEO of the Ministry of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, Agafili Shem Leo advised that the Government of Samoa has been happy to support the PIDC in establishing its operations in Apia.

“The ongoing relocation aligns perfectly with the organisation’s theme for a ‘New Beginning and Growth’, which was recently launched in the Republic of Marshall Islands where PIDC met last month for its 2016 Annual Conference.”

Leo noted that at the conference, key issues discussed included the effective management of borders, the collection and sharing of data/information, technical assistance and capacity building activities and the role of labour mobility in economic growth.

Ms. Vaosa Epa, former Chair of the PIDC and Samoa Public Service Commission member also welcomed the establishment of the PIDC presence in Apia acknowledging the hard work  already undertaken to facilitate  the PACIFIC IMMIGRATION DIRECTORS’ CONFERENCE Secretariat’s relocation since the signing of the Headquarters Agreement between PIDC and the Government of Samoa in June 2016.

What is PIDC
The PIDC is a forum for official Immigration Agencies of the Pacific region. It was established in 1996 as a result of an initiative taken by the first PIDC, sponsored by the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat.

The PIDC plays a vital role in coordinating joint responses to common issues faced by Member administrations.  Key activities include coordinating and implementing strategic approaches to common challenges and supporting immigration and border control related technical assistance and capacity building activities to support Members to achieve national immigration and border control obligations.

The PIDC works collaboratively with regional law enforcement agencies as well as other regional and global organisations on migration related matters.

The newly appointed Head of Secretariat is Mr Ioane Alama. He was previously employed by Samoa Ministry for Revenue until 2009.  From 2009 until 2015 he was employed as the Regional Security Adviser for the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat and for the last twelve months has been employed as the Operations Manager for the Oceania Customs Organisation.

For  additional  information  contact  Ioane  Alama,  Head  of  Secretariat  at Ioane.Alama@pidcsec.org.

General information about the PIDC can be found at  www.pidcsec.org

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