A legal think-tank for the Pacific maritime sector
Tuesday, 30 January 2007

The Pacific International Maritime Law Association (PIMLA) is anticipating a rise in requests for maritime legal assistance work sought by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community’s (SPC) member countries.

Cook Islands, Marshall Islands, Niue and Tuvalu have benefited from the maritime legal assistance work provided by PIMLA in 2006 and follow up visits will be done in 2007.


Apart from this, PIMLA has been actively involved in coordinating, disseminating maritime legal information, hosting seminars and workshops as part of capacity building or education for lawyers in the region who are employed in the maritime sector or within Attorney Generals Offices in their respective governments.

“The way we work is by utilising resources and expertise we already have in the Pacific,” said Mr. Fagaloa Tufuga, an executive committee member and SPC's Maritime Legal Officer.

“It is a classic case of Pacific Islanders helping and empowering Pacific Islanders,” he said.

Mr. Tufuga said that other than the countries mentioned above, they have also received requests from Fiji and Samoa to work on the two country's prevention of marine pollution legislation.

PIMLA Executives met in Nadi from 24th – 26th of January 2007 as part of the SPC/Regional Maritime Programme (RMP) retreat to discuss and endorse maritime working programmes for this year.

High on the agenda for PIMLA this year are preparations for the regional Transport Ministerial meeting which is scheduled to be held in Apia, Samoa in April.

“We are also trying to gain observer status in the Pacific Island Law Officers Meeting (PILOM) which is attended by Solicitor Generals and Attorney Generals from the region. The Solicitor General for Kiribati is hosting the 25th  PILOM,” Mr. Tufuga said.

PIMLA currently operates under the auspices of SPC/RMP alongside other regional Maritime Associations like PacMA (Pacific Islands Maritime Association), APP (Association of Pacific Ports) and PacWIMA (Pacific Women in Maritime Association).

PIMLA has also made some changes in that the current chair. Fiji’s Magistrate Kiniviliame Keteca has resigned as Chair because of his duties on the bench but he remains on the executive committee. Fellow executive committee member, Fiji’s Silipa Kubuabola has taken over until the next AGM in Apia, Samoa.

The other executives comprise of Ms. Masio Nidung (PNG), Mr. James Tari (Vanuatu), Mr. Fred Amoa (Samoa) and Mr. Fagaloa Tufuga (SPC/RMP). They are all former graduates of the IMO's International Maritime Law Institute in Malta.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 30 January 2007 )
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