The Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Hon. Mereseini Vuniwaqa this morning received a courtesy visit from the New Zealand High Commissioner to Fiji, His Excellency Jonathan Curr.

The meeting was an opportunity for Minister Vuniwaqa to inform HE Curr of the Fijian Government’s commitment to gender equality and improving outcomes for women and girls in the following six thematic priority areas: ending violence against women and girls, women’s economic empowerment; strengthening institutional capacity and structure on gender transformative programming, improving the availability, quality, analysis and use of gender data/statistic, improving protection from and resilience to disasters and climate change risks for women and girls and changing social norms & behaviors – working with men and boys.

Minister Vuniwaqa also emphasized that the Ministry will work towards addressing priority areas through the development of the National Gender Policy’s Strategic Implementation Framework (2020-2025) in partnership with relevant stakeholders.

In response, Mr. Curr said that he was pleased to meet Minister Vuniwaqa and her team to discuss the opportunities and possibilities of cooperation in supporting the goal of gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls in Fiji. He added that they looked forward to sharing knowledge and best practices to help the Fijian Government continue to further improve the lives of its people.

There were also discussions on possible avenues for reviving the relationship between Fiji and New Zealand and the opportunities to enhance programmes for women in both countries.

Minister Vuniwaqa acknowledged the visit by the New Zealand High Commissioner saying that this was a positive move to address women empowerment and gender equality.

Also present at the meeting were the Permanent Secretary for the Ministry, Ms. Jennifer Poole, Director for Women, Mrs. Selai Korovusere, the National Gender Advisor, Ms. Mehrak Mehrvar, and the First Secretary-Development, Ms. Sally Waswo.