PACER PLUS TO ENTER INTO FORCE ON 13 DECEMBER 2020
This week, on 14 October 2020, the Cook Islands joined Australia, Kiribati, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Tonga as the eighth signatory state to ratify The Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations (PACER) Plus Agreement (the Agreement) heralding the final requirement for entry into force of the Agreement.
The Agreement will enter into force on 13 December 2020, 60 days after the date the Cook Islands notified the Depositary of the completion of her domestic processes.
PACER Plus is a regional trade, development and economic cooperation agreement between Pacific Island Countries and Australia and New Zealand covering trade in goods, services and investment.
"We have reached a significant milestone in the Pacific's journey towards enhancing economic integration and growth" Tonga's Minister for Trade and Economic Development, Hon Samiu Vaipulu stated. 'The PACER Plus Agreement will encourage and promote trade and investment that is essential for our region's recovery and growth during and after COVID-19 and reinforces our commitment to our Blue Pacific and the strengthening of regionalism" he explained.
PACER Plus negotiations commenced in 2009 and the Agreement was opened for signature in Nuku'alofa on 14 June 2017. It has been signed by 11 countries including Australia, Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.
After the date of entry into force of the Agreement, the Agreement shall enter into force for any other signatory 60 days after the date on which such signatory has notified the Depositary in writing of the completion of its internal requirements.
The Depositary of the Agreement is the Government of the Kingdom of Tonga.
16 October 2020