On the second day of the national consultations on ongoing programs and activities of the Micronesian Trade Committee (MTC), Mr. Alfred Alfred, Jr., Secretary of the RMI Ministry of Finance, assisted by Ms. Rebecca Lorennij, Secretary of the Ministry of Resources and Development, handed over a check of $20,000.00 to the MTC Interim Secretariat represented by Mr. Adelman M. Joseph, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Trade, Division of Trade and Investment, FSM Department of Resources and Development. Ms. Lorennij indicated that the contribution demonstrates ownership of the MTC stressing that this sub regional initiative is likely to play an important role in promoting and enhancing trade and economic development in the 3 countries, on account of the declining and imminent termination of the financial assistance under the amended Compact. Receiving the check, Mr. Joseph indicated that it will complement the FSM’s contribution of $30,000.00 and will serve to support MTC work, including the establishment of a permanent Secretariat to move forward the objectives of the MTC. The handover ceremony was also attended by Mr. Jean Bertrand Azapmo, National Trade Adviser under the Commonwealth Secretariat, and staff of the RMI Division of Trade and Investment.
During the two day national consultations, the private sector strongly supported the MTC initiative and stressed the need to quickly finalize the treaty establishing the MTC Secretariat as a legal entity that will facilitate dialogue between the private sector and the government, support the governments of the three Countries in putting in place the appropriate trade facilitation infrastructure and enabling environment, and undertake supportive activities for the private sector as well as non-governmental organizations. Government officials attending the consultations acknowledged the important role of the private sector as the engine of trade and economic growth. In order to enhance private sector’s involvement in the process of sub-regional trade and economic cooperation and integration led by the MTC, participants recommended among other things that the private sector should be included in the working group set up to discuss the MTC treaty.
The vision of the MTC, which was established in 2008 through a Memorandum of Understanding, is the enhancement of trade and economic cooperation and integration among the FSM, RMI, and Palau with a view to achieve sustainable and equitable socio-economic development and improve the standard and quality of life of their people.
For any information on MTC, contact the RMI Division of Trade and Investment at 625-4020 or the MTC Interim Secretariat at (691) 320-5133.