Our councillors and other delegates have just returned from a 10 day trip to Tonga for the Associated Country Women of the World South Pacific Area Conference. They have come back full of stories about a very different way of life. They met the NZ High Commissioner to Tonga (and presented him with a pair of aftersocks, of course), as well as Her Royal Highness, Princess Mele Siu’ilikutapu Kalaniuvalu Fotofili, patron of the ACWW South Pacific Area conference hostess society, as pictured.
Resolutions passed included recommendations that groups lobby their governments to provide stricter surveillance of all imported goods and containers, and to ban the importation of primary industry and horticultural products ‘which have the potential to ruin local production’.
Also carried was the request for closer monitoring and public reporting by government of the use of financial help and ‘in kind’ donations distributed annually or in times of disasters, through each nations’ agencies.
A New South Wales resolution calling for organizations to lobby their governments to urgently resume World Trade Organisation negotiations for the removal of tariffs and agricultural subsidies which are distorting world food markets, damaging the environment and hindering the development of sustainable agriculture throughout the world was also carried.
On a lighter note, Wendy McGowan thanks all the RWNZ delegates she travelled with for the awesome fun and fellowship that they all enjoyed!