PM inspects Samoan guard of honour in first stop on Pacific trip
The Prime Minister has been welcomed in Samoa by a full military band at her first stop in her Pacific Mission trip.
Foreign Minister Winston Peters is accompanying Jacinda Ardern on a week-long trip to Samoa, Niue, Tonga and the Cook Islands.
A sudden downpour of rain in Samoa today sent the media and delegations scrambling, but stopped just in time for Ms Ardern to inspect the guard of honour.
Ms Ardern also announced today that $3 million worth of extra funding has been committed to Samoa to help with the recovery from Cyclone Gita last month.
She said the country suffered damage to business and homes, as well as a large landslide that will cost a lot to clean up.
In a joint news conference with Samoa's Prime Minister, Ms Ardern emphasised the importance of the relationship between the two countries.
Ms Ardern said they discussed a range of issues in their meeting, including how to improve the seasonal worker scheme.
She also announced a $6.5 million package to boost employment and invest in small businesses in Samoa.
This year's annual Pacific Mission trip will focus on recovery and resilience; Samoa and Tonga in particular are still struggling to recover from Cyclone Gita.
Ms Ardern said earlier climate change and economic development will also be discussed.
This will be Ms Ardern's first time visiting the Pacific as Prime Minister and give her a chance to meet the leaders of the countries before the Pacific Islands Forum later in the year.
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