A blog maintained by Tevita Kete, PGR Officer
Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), Suva, Fiji Islands
This weblog documents the activities of Pacific Agricultural Genetic Resources Network (PAPGREN), along with other information on plant genetic resources (PGR) in the Pacific.
The myriad varieties found within cultivated plants are fundamental to the present and future productivity of agriculture. PAPGREN, which is coordinated by the Land Resources Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), helps Pacific countries and territories to conserve their crop genetic diversity sustainably, with technical assistance from the Bioversity International (BI) and support from NZAID and ACIAR.
SPC also hosts the Centre of Pacific Crops and Trees (CEPaCT). The CEPaCT maintains regional in vitro collections of crops important to the Pacific and carries out research on tissue culture technology. The CEPaCT Adviser is Dr Mary Taylor (MaryT@spc.int), the CEPaCT Curator is Ms Valerie Tuia (ValerieT@spc.int).
PAPGREN coordination and support
Mr William Wigmore
Mr Adelino S. Lorens
Dr Lois Englberger
Mr Apisai Ucuboi
Dr Maurice Wong
Mr Tianeti Beenna Ioane
Mr Frederick Muller
Mr Herman Francisco
Ms Rosa Kambuou
Ms Laisene Samuelu
Mr Jimi Saelea
Mr Tony Jansen
Mr Finao Pole
Mr Frazer Bule Lehi
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Tuesday, May 06, 2008
Posted 4:50 PM by Tevita
Linking Gaire To The Global Community
From : SPC
Wednesday: April 30, 2008
(Secretariat of the Pacific Community)
The community of Gaire, in the Central Province, Papua New Guinea is in a state of excitement. This rural community, located an hour's drive southeast of Port Moresby and home to about 2500 people, will be the first operational rural site for the Pacific Rural Internet Connectivity System (RICS.)
The Pacific RICS project is aimed at providing affordable high-speed Internet access and radio to rural and remote communities. It is undertaken within the Digital Strategy and defined by the Pacific Plan approved by the Forum leaders in Port Moresby in 2005.
Speaking on behalf of the idyllic coastal community, local Church leader Reverend Sisisa Maina said Gaire is a buzz of expectation as the people look forward to the official launch of the RICS, Saturday, May 3.
'The project was recently presented to us after our Sunday service by officials from Papua New Guinea Radiocommunications and Telecommunications Technical Authority (PANGTEL)and the Ministry of Communication and Information,' said Gaire church leader, Reverend Sisia Maina.
'They talked about the potential benefits that this Internet project will bring to the community and gave us a timetable for the installation and launch of the RICS project in the village. We felt very honoured and privileged to be the first community in Papua New Guinea to be chosen,especially when we heard that Gaire will be the first site in the region.'
'We're all looking forward to the launch this coming Saturday and to learning all about the opportunities it offers our community members, particularly our young children.'
Providing affordable and reliable communication technology is a challenge in many places in the region, even in some urban areas. The problem is worse in rural and remote areas, where more than 80 percent of the estimated 9.15 million Pacific Islanders live.
Dr Jimmie Rodgers, SPC Director-General, has been a strong advocate of the project since its inception. He says, 'The Pacific RICS project can unlock the socio-economic development potential of our region.'
In a message to the first subregional RICS workshop in February this year, Greg Urwin, Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, stressed to regional telecommunication regulators that they were not issuing a license to merely operate a VSAT (very small aperture terminal) station; rather they were extending a lifeline to rural and remote communities.
The Gaire project launch will showcase a live demonstration of the low-cost, reliable, affordable and easy-to-use SkyEdge technologies adopted for Pacific RICS. The project is coordinated by local agencies including the Ministry for Communication and Information, PANGTEL and the State owned Telikom PNG limited as the general carrier.
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