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PACER Plus Development Assistance

The Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations Plus (PACER Plus) can help Pacific island countries become more active participants in regional and global supply chains, in turn creating new opportunities for economic growth, jobs and raising living standards. Dedicated assistance is critical to achieving these outcomes.

The PACER Plus free trade agreement includes a Chapter on Development and Economic Cooperation and an accompanying Implementation Arrangement. These provide the framework for members to identify needs for assistance, prioritise activities and evaluate progress throughout implementation.

The Australian Government, together with New Zealand, meets these needs through the PACER Plus Implementation Package (AUD19 million + NZD7 million, 2021-25). The Implementation Package assists PACER Plus members maximise the benefits of the trade agreement.

To deliver the Implementation Package, in 2021 members established a bespoke organisation called the PACER Plus Implementation Unit – based in Apia, Samoa. As a Pacific trade centre of excellence, the Unit is the secretariat of the trade agreement and provides advisory and technical support to PACER Plus members.

The trade-related development assistance delivered through the Implementation Package is member-driven, responding to the needs identified by PACER Plus members themselves. They build upon the successes and lessons learned from Australia’s ‘Readiness Package’ support (AUD4 million 2016-21), which provided technical support to signatories in preparation for PACER Plus’ entry into force.

Activities of the Implementation Package focus on the following trade-enabling themes:

  • Rules of Origin and other Aspects of Implementation of Tariff Commitments
  • Customs
  • Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures
  • Technical Regulations, Standards and Conformity Assessment
  • Trade in Services, and
  • Investment

Australia’s commitment to PACER Plus is part of the economic integration pillar of the Pacific Step-up.

Australia delivers broader Aid for Trade, private sector development and economic growth support to Pacific islands countries through our Pacific regional and bilateral development programmes.

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