Guam – Speaker Judi Won Pat reports on last week’s Association of Pacific Island Legisaltures [APIL] in her Weekly Address.
HEAR the Speaker’s Weekly Address HERE>>>6-27 speaker address.mp3
READ the Speaker’s Weekly Address below:
“The Guam Legislature secures regional support for growing Guam’s economy.”
My Dear People of Guam,
Buenas yan Hafa Adai! This past week the Guam delegation to the Association of Pacific Island Legislatures (APIL) was successful in
securing the support of regional nation states and territories for several important initiatives that are meant to stimulate and sustain local and regional economic growth.
I led a delegation of Guam Senators at the APIL’s 31st General Assembly on Saipan this past week and together we were successful in securing support from ten nation states and territories for the Guam-CNMI Visa-Waiver program and a regional Free Trade Agreement.
APIL Resolution No. 31-GA-10 expresses the support of APIL member states for Guam and the CNMI visa waiver program to include China.
The resolution was authored and introduced by myself and was co-sponsored by Senator Chris Duenas who is an APIL Director. Senator Tina Rose Muna Barnes was vocal in her testimony and both she and Senator Sam Mabini worked with me to encourage APIL delegates to vote for passage of the resolution.
The regional nation-state leaders saw that the inclusion of China into the Guam-CNMI Visa Waiver program provides new access to a promising tourism market.
In November of last year the APIL adopted a resolution that I introduced that further affirmed its united position in desiring to strengthen our Pacific peoples and governments through trade and economic accords that mutually benefit APIL member nations and territories.
The resolution dubbed the “Blue Continent Free Trade Agreement” called for regional legislatures to facilitate, encourage and promote free trade among island countries and states in the Pacific Region.
APIL also adopted a resolution that respectfully called on the chief executives of the respective regional nation states to adopt and
promulgate free trade initiatives for our region in the exchange of local goods and services between our nation states.
In closing, the future of our island’s economic prosperity must be rooted in an actionable plan that incorporates new markets to Guam and in our region.