PIDC Board Members meet in Koror to discuss Immigration Regional Priorities.
PIDC Secretariat - November 03, 2023. The 54th Pacific Immigration Development Community (PIDC) meeting, was convened in Koror, Palau on 25 and 26 October 2023 and attended by representatives from Vanuatu (Chair), Solomon Islands (Vice Chair), PNG (Vice Chair) Australia (Principal Donor), New Zealand (Principal Donor), Tonga (Polynesia rep), Palau (Micronesia), Fiji (Melanesia), and Tuvalu (Small Island States).
Mr. Jeffrey Markson, the PIDC Chair and Vanuatu Immigration Director thanked Palau Immigration for hosting the 54th Board meeting and encouraged Board members to actively contribute to Board discussions in support of the PIDC family of immigration agencies.
The Board meeting provided an opportunity for Board members to discuss emerging issues affecting PIDC Members across the Pacific and the effectiveness of PIDC’s regional support programme supporting members in its 3 key strategic focus areas relating to: (i) Border Enforcement and Traveller Facilitation, (ii) National Immigration Strengthening, and (iii) Partnership and Coordination. The Board meeting consequently discussed thematic issues relating to border management systems, PIDC’s legislation review and modernisation programme, strategic plan development, website development, capacity building programmes, and ongoing regional efforts at addressing transnational organised crime issues through PIDC’s information sharing network.
The increasing level of mobility and movement of people in the Pacific and the increasing connectedness of the islands to the outside world has increased the varying levels of issues and threats that immigration agencies have to now address in the 21st century and PIDC as a regional immigration body needs to be considerate to members needs and limitations and identifying and advocating for regional solutions and approaches to managing this emerging regional and international migration issues.
“With ever increasing numbers of people travelling internationally within the region, immigration agencies face ongoing challenges. The PIDC through its Board takes a collective, pragmatic approach to these challenges, seeking regional solutions and taking small incremental steps to improve border management across the region”, Mr Akuila Ratu the Head of Secretariat said.
The PIDC works collaboratively with immigration agencies across the Pacific and with regional law enforcement agencies as well as other regional and global organisations on migration matters. Representing Palau in the PIDC board meeting was Mr. Flavin Misech, Chief of the Division of Immigration and Mr. John Tarkong Jr., Director, Bureau of Customs & Border Protection. Chief Misech welcomed the board members to Palau and acknowledged the support provided by PIDC over the years. According to Director Tarkong, this was a very productive meeting and commended the board members and Secretariat for the progress and important mechanisms that they have set in place to support the ongoing work and activities being planned for the region. Through the meeting, the PIDC Secretariat expressed PIDC’s commitment along with the members in addressing and supporting regional border security related activities, on-going projects, governance, work plans, programs and policies to support the members despite many of the challenges in the region.