President Panuelo Solicits the European Union’s Consideration to Establish a European Union Delegation Office in the North Pacific

PALIKIR, Pohnpei—His Excellency David W. Panuelo, President of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), has recently written a letter to His Excellency Charles Michel, Her Excellency Ursula von der Leyen, and His Excellency Josep Borrell, the President of the European Council, the President of the European Commission, and the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs & Security Policy respectively, requesting that the European Union consider opening a European Union Delegation Office in the FSM.

At present, the North Pacific is served by the European Union through the latter’s office in the Republic of Fiji, which to the knowledge of the FSM National Government serves the whole of the broader Pacific region. It is the view of the FSM National Government that it would be to the benefit of both the five sovereign Micronesian nations of the FSM, the Republic of Nauru, the Republic of Palau, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Kiribati, and to the European Union itself, if a separate and distinct European Union Delegation Office was hosted in the North Pacific for the purpose of directly coordinating with North Pacific countries.

The foundational reasoning behind wanting a European Union Delegation Office in the North Pacific is broadly consistent with the reasoning the Micronesian Presidents Summit (MPS) gave to the United Nations for the establishment of a Multi-Country Office: to better address the needs and the priorities of the countries in the North Pacific. 

“With the current hosting of diplomatic missions of some of the top economies of the world,” President Panuelo wrote, “in the form of the United States of America; the People’s Republic of China; Japan and Australia; along with representative offices of various regional and international organizations, notably the Asian Development; the World Bank; the International Organization for Migration; the World Health Organization; the Secretariat of the Pacific Community for the North Pacific, which continues to serve as an implementing entity of a variety of European Union’s programs and services in the Pacific; the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission; and now the recently established United Nations Multi-Country Office for the North Pacific, the [FSM]
is set-up well as a prime site to host a European Union delegation. With the recent conclusion of the re-negotiated Cotonou Agreement and its impending implementation of targeted developments, the presence of an in-country representation of the European Union in the northern Pacific would add significant value to the current architecture to implement priorities provided in the Agreement. I truly am confident that such a pronounced presence of the European Union in the [FSM] would also bode well for the entire northern Pacific, as it would represent and equate to limitless opportunities and mutual benefits in our partnerships.”

“Excellencies,” President Panuelo concluded, “I earnestly look forward to continue working with the European Union and its member states in the many years to come on matters of mutual benefits, and to ensure that this partnership flourishes between our peoples. I assure your Excellencies of my firm commitment to preserve and build on our relationship for mutual benefits, and towards newest height in the days ahead.”