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NZ adds $100m to Pacific energy projects

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 7/06/2016

New Zealand will front up another $100 million for energy projects in the Pacific as it tries to help the region head towards sustainability.

The contribution is part of a $1 billion package agreed to by New Zealand, the European Union and investors at the Pacific Energy Conference in Auckland on Tuesday.

Foreign Minister Murray McCully said the funds were aimed to helping Polynesia reach 50 per cent renewable energy by 2024 and giving a million people in Melanesia access to power.

New Zealand's investment in the area now totals $220m, Mr McCully said.

"The $635m committed at the 2013 Pacific Energy Summit has translated into over $900m of investments across 70 projects."

"In the same way, I hope to see the $1b of commitments announced today increase as opportunities for leverage become apparent, and as the ambition of partners grows."

Other investors included the the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank Group, Japan, United Arab Emirates, and Australia.

The EU and New Zealand have partnered on power projects in the region since 2013 and a declaration signed on Tuesday expanded the scope projects in the region.

"Furthermore this declaration paves the way for the future expansion of the successful EU-New Zealand partnership to fields such as climate change," Mr McCully said.

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