Stepping-up in Fiji

Prime Minister Morrison and Prime Minister Bainimarama signing the Fiji-Australia Vuvale Partnership 16 September 2019. Photo: @ScottMorrisonMP Twitter

"We commit to work together to strengthen further the bilateral relationship and to contribute our best efforts to making the Pacific a region that is secure strategically, stable economically and sovereign politically."

Joint statement: Prime Ministers' Bainimarama and Morrison

There is a genuine warmth in relations between Australia and Fiji, underpinned by strong people-to-people links and longstanding economic and development ties. These links are grounded in our shared community, historical, sporting, religious and family ties. These are the real strengths of the relationship.

In recognition of our close cooperation Prime Minister Morrison and Prime Minister Bainimarama signed The Fiji-Australia Vuvale Partnership during Prime Minister Bainimarama's visit to Australia in September 2019. It is broad-ranging and comprehensive agreement that will pave the way for deeper security, economic and people-to-people links.

Australia and Fiji have also committed to Annual Foreign Ministers Meetings to further strengthen our bilateral relationship.  


Security partnerships

In line with the Boe Declaration on regional security, we are strengthening our defence and security cooperation, building on our commitment to jointly redevelop the Blackrock Peacekeeping and Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Camp.  Once completed, the Blackrock Camp will be a world class facility enhancing interoperability and Fiji's ability to respond to humanitarian crises in the region.   

Australia is scheduled to handover two Guardian-class patrol boats to Fiji to support maritime security in the Pacific region, under the Pacific Maritime Security Program

Seventeen government officials posing for a photo in front of a building
Head of the Office of the Pacific, Ewen McDonald, accompanied the Hon Marise Payne, Foreign Minister, Minister for Women, to Fiji in June – her first visit as Foreign Minister following Australia's May 2019 general election. Once completed, Blackrock Peacekeeping and Humanitarian Disaster Relief Camp (pictured) will be a world class facility. Photo: @MarisePayne Twitter

People-to-people links

The Seasonal Worker Programme and Pacific Labour Mobility Scheme will help to address labour shortages in rural and regional Australia.

Video: Fiji joins the Pacific Labour Scheme

Foreign Minister Payne and Fiji High Commissioner Daunivalu signing Pacific Labour Mobility Scheme 5 April 2019.

Australia and Fiji share a deep love of sports. Through the new PacificAus Sports program, we helped Fiji's national netball team, Fiji Pearls', to compete at the 2019 Netball World Cup and are sponsoring the Kaiviti Silktails to enter into the Ron Massey Cup in 2020. Fiji will host the NRL PM's XIII Rugby League match in Suva. We will also continue to deliver sports for development outcomes through the Pacific Sports Partnerships (PSP) Program.

Fiji Pearls’ at the Netball World Cup July 2019 between Fiji and Samoa. Photo: Netball Samoa

Australia is ramping up its education support to the Pacific. The Australia Pacific Training Coalition based in Fiji will enhance vocational education and training across the Pacific. Schools from Fiji will now be included in the expanded Australia-Pacific Schools Partnerships (BRIDGE) two-year pilot program.

Australian High Commissioner to Fiji, H.E John Feakes attends the APTC Fiji Graduation in November 2018. Photo: APTC

Operational since 1 July 2019, the Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific (AIFFP) supports transformative infrastructure in the Pacific and Timor-Leste. Australia is engaging closely with governments across the Pacific, including through our diplomatic missions, to ensure the AIFFP supports the development priorities of Pacific countries.

Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific logo
 

More about Australia's Pacific engagement and Pacific Regional aid programs


Development

In 2017, the Pacific Women established the Fiji Women's Fund (the Fund) to support women's groups, organisations and networks in Fiji through grants that promote gender equality. It is hoped the Fund will ultimately be supported entirely by the private sector and local philanthropy.

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women Senator the Hon Marise Payne enjoyed discussions with women parliamentarians during a breakfast meeting at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva. Photo: DFAT

Australia's partnership with the International Finance Corporation supported Fiji to develop the tender for the first-ever Pacific hospital public-private partnership with Aspen Medical. Our support directly catalysed Australian private-sector investment, helping a growing Australian company, with a strong reputation for delivery of health services to broaden its commercial presence into the region.

Deputy High Commissioner Anna Dorney with Open Heart International surgeons in Fiji performing heart operations. Photo: DFAT

Tropical Cyclone Winston: On 20-21 February 2016, Fiji was hit with the strongest tropical cyclone ever recorded in the southern hemisphere, causing 44 deaths and impacting more than sixty per cent of the population. Working closely with the Fiji Government, Australia provided $35 million to support Fiji's recovery.

Ttropical Cyclone Winston infographic
Australia's response to help Fiji recover from Tropical Cyclone Winston. View a larger version

More about Fiji and Australia's bilateral program in Fiji


Key documents


Last Updated: 13 November 2019