23 July, 2012
PM to visit Samoa to commemorate Friendship Treaty
Prime Minister John Key will lead a Parliamentary delegation to Samoa next week, to mark the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Friendship between New Zealand and Samoa.
“Samoa is the only country in the world with which New Zealand has a formal Friendship Treaty – it’s a mark of our deep ties, shared values and long history of cooperation,” says Mr Key.
“New Zealand and Samoa’s relationship is a special one, and the Treaty of Friendship, signed shortly after Samoa gained independence from New Zealand in 1962, is the cornerstone of that relationship.
“I look forward to meeting Prime Minister Tuilaepa and members of his Cabinet while in Samoa to mark the 50th anniversary, as well as discussing regional issues of mutual interest ahead of this year’s Pacific Islands Forum.”
Mr Key has invited the Leader of the Opposition and representatives of each political party in Parliament to travel to Samoa on the visit.
Mr Key’s programme in Samoa will include a visit to Poutasi village, where he will open the new community hall, and a State luncheon at the Robert Louis Stevenson Museum, where the Treaty of Friendship was signed.
Mr Key will also launch Friendship Week, which comprises a range of events including a New Zealand film and television festival, a food and beverage mini-expo, and a series of cultural events and exhibitions.
The Prime Minister will depart from Wellington on July 31 and return to New Zealand on August 1.