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The Pacific

Economic prosperity in the Pacific

As a member of the Pacific family, Australia shares the responsibilities and challenges of supporting the region's prosperity. The Pacific is our home, and it is in our interests to foster a strong, stable and successful region that enables our economies to grow and peoples to prosper.

Together as a region, we want to support open and transparent trade, provide and take advantage of commercial opportunities for Australian and Pacific exporters and investors, build resilient infrastructure that supports Pacific partners' economic aspirations, and strongly encourage labour mobility.

Australia has responded to COVID-19 in the Pacific to help address the economic and social costs of the pandemic.

Group photo of the participants at the Pacific Islands Forum Leaders meeting, including Senator Wong.
51st Pacific Islands Forum Leaders meeting, Suva, Fiji. Credit: @SenatorWong Twitter

Pacific Labour Mobility

Labour Mobility is a win-win for Australia and sending countries. The Pacific Labour Scheme helps fill labour shortages in rural and regional Australia and provides employment opportunities for Pacific islanders to develop skills and earn income.

Man washing animal carcass

Australia-Pacific Training Coalition

The APTC is Australia's flagship education and skills investment in the Pacific. Over 17,000 Pacific Islanders have graduated with Australian qualifications since APTC commenced operation in 2007. Its latest phase of implementation is focussed on embedding the APTC in Pacific TVET systems, including increasing the quality, relevance and cost-effectiveness of Pacific partner TVET provision. It is also focused on co-investment by industry and partner governments, ensuring APTC's skills training is demand-led and inclusive; and ensuring that APTC graduates are qualified for, and connected to, domestic and international labour markets.

Chef plating a meal

Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific (AIFFP)

Operational since 1 July 2019, the Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific (AIFFP) supports transformative infrastructure in the Pacific and Timor-Leste. The $2 billion infrastructure initiative uses grant funding and loans to support the development of high priority infrastructure in the region, such as telecommunications, energy, transport and water infrastructure. Australia is engaging closely with governments across the Pacific, including through our diplomatic missions, to ensure the AIFFP supports the development priorities of Pacific countries.

Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific (AIFFP)


The Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations Plus (PACER Plus) is a regional development-centred trade agreement covering goods, services and investment. It will provide commercial opportunities for Australian exporters and investors, and support Pacific island countries to become more active partners in, and benefit from, regional and global trade. PACER Plus will promote trade, investment and economic growth in the Pacific and support post COVID-19 economic recovery in our region.

Eleven officials stand in a row

Economic growth and private sector development

Australia invests in a number of programs that support economic growth in the Pacific. These programs work to improve the business-enabling environment in the Pacific, support businesses that are important to growth, connect investors with Pacific business opportunities and help the Pacific derive maximum benefit from regional trade and investment opportunities.

More about Economic growth: fisheries assistance

Fruit broken open to show the inside

Kava Imports into Australia

On 11 October 2019, Australia launched a commercial pilot for kava. The pilot recognises the deep cultural significance of kava for Pacific Island communities both in Australia and across the Pacific region. The pilot also supports efforts to increase cultural and economic ties between Australia and Pacific Island countries.

Although the Kava Pilot has now ended, arrangements under the pilot remain unchanged – Kava exporters and importers can continue to apply for import permits from the office of drug control (Department of Health).

A bowl of kava sitting on a table with a bowls and a ladle around the bowl.
Image credit: DFAT

Australia-Pacific Partnerships for Aviation Program

A safer, more sustainable, inclusive, and resilient Pacific aviation sector is central to the region's prosperity and economic development. It underpins tourism, education, and business opportunities in the Pacific.
Australia is working in partnership with the Pacific, whole-of-government agencies, multilateral organisations, and partner governments to deliver the Australia-Pacific Partnerships for Aviation Program (2023-2028).

Australia-Pacific Partnerships for Aviation Program
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