The Director General of the Universal Postal Union,
Chairman and Board Directors of Post Fiji Limited,
Management and staff of Post Fiji Limited,
Government Representatives,
Invited Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
A very good morning to you all.

Ladies and Gentlemen, today marks a historical event for the postal sector in Fiji and the Pacific region as we inaugurate the Universal Postal Union (UPU) Sub-Regional Office right here in Fiji - and what better place for the UPU office to be based in than the Post Fiji Limited’s headquarters.

Director General, allow me to extend the Fiji Government’s appreciation in your confidence to establish a sub-regional office in Fiji. The Prime Minister who also is the Minister for Public Enterprises has requested me to convey to you Director General, his deep appreciation for having chosen Fiji as the host country for the Sub Regional Office of UPU.

He would have very much liked to be here, but his commitments entailing travel to Papua New Guinea for a State Visit and meetings with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US Secretary for State Mr. Antony J. Blinken has precluded him from doing so. He has requested me to convey his sincere apologies and extend his best wishes for this auspicious occasion.

This initiative is testament to the great relationship that already exists between the UPU and the Government of Fiji - it is one that we hope will continue into the future and we can both mutually benefit from.

Fiji being the hub of the Pacific is indeed proud and honored to host the new sub-regional office of a prestigious international organisation such as the UPU, for several distinct reasons:
- Firstly, it will enhance the UPU’s ability to provide member countries in the Pacific Region with technical assistance for the development and modernisation of their postal services.

- The new office will oversee the postal operations not only in Fiji but eight (8) other neighboring Pacific Island countries such as Kiribati, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.

- With the sub-regional office in Fiji, UPU is better placed to strengthen its relationship between Pacific Island members.

- As our national postal service provider, Post Fiji now has direct access to UPU technical assistance given the close proximity to the new office premises. Needless to say, other postal operators in the Pacific Region now also have easier access to UPU technical expertise.   

I understand that in accordance with UPU’s Development Cooperation Policy 2022 - 2025, the UPU is ensuring the continuity of regional approach through regional development plans that incorporate all of the UPU’s activities within a coherent and coordinated framework.
Ladies and Gentlemen, the global postal sector continues to face tough challenges such as digitalisation competition, evolving consumer demands, continuing-decline in letter volumes etc. – it is therefore critical that postal operators continue to redefine their business operations.

Given the challenges that the postal sector is facing, we are grateful that the UPU decided to open its office in Fiji and ensure that the Pacific postal sector is not left behind and that we are equipped with necessary financial and technical support to develop relevant technologies and business opportunities and remain innovative, so that ever-changing consumer expectation continues to be met.

Undoubtedly, this new regional office will promote the principle of regionalism and strengthen Fiji’s relationship with other Pacific island postal operators.
Ladies and Gentlemen, to formalise the establishment of this new UPU sub-regional office, the Government of Fiji together with UPU will sign a Host Country Agreement.

At this juncture, I would also like to thank the Board and Management of Post Fiji for agreeing to partner with the Government to successfully host the new sub-regional office here in Suva, Fiji.

Again, I would like to extend the Government of Fiji’s sincere appreciation to the Director General and his team for having the confidence to establish a sub-regional office that will not only benefit Fiji but all our Pacific-based postal operators.

The DG and your team – please accept our best wishes for the UPU’s operations and plans for the rest of the year and we hope that you will enjoy the rest of your stay in Fiji.

Thank you and Vinaka vakalevu