Press Statement - The 4th Pacific Islands Trade Exhibition will take place at the JETRO Exhibition Hall in Tokyo, Japan from 21-26 May 2009.

Announcing the Exhibition, Director of the Pacific Islands Centre in Tokyo, Mr Keiichi Hasegawa says: "The Festival will feature Pacific Island products including pepper, coconut oil and soaps, black pearls, noni juice, handicraft, fresh papaya, dried and processed food (banana and taro chips, spiced pineapple, etc), coffee, vanilla beans, seaweed and stamps."

"The culture of the Pacific islands and tourism will also feature predominately under separate cover on Level 2 of the JETRO Exhibition Hall as will authentic Pacific island cuisine, cooked and sold to Japanese public," says Mr Hasegawa

The programme titled "Viva! Pacific Islanders" will feature live stage performances by Pacific island dance troupes from Papua New Guinea, the Cook Islands, and Fiji, as well as local professional dancers from Japan. The Japanese troupe is made up of island students studying in Japan.

The programme including the Trade Exhibition and "Viva! Pacific Islanders" is proudly sponsored by the Pacific Islands Centre (PIC), Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) in partnership with JETRO and in collaboration with Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan.

Singers Mr Edgar Santos from the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) and Mr Jese Mucunabitu from Fiji have been flown in specifically to perform at the promotional event courtesy of the PIC.

Tourism operators and Pacific island embassies will also have their own space to promote Pacific island travel packages and destinations while the embassies will display cultural cuisine.

"JETRO has raised the bar to new heights," says Mr Hasegawa. "Never before has this level of effort gone into promoting and preparing the event. Colourful posters as far as the eye can see in train stations around Tokyo and beyond, brochures handed out a street level, on-going TV advertisements and dedicated feature shows on prime time TV are but some of the promotions dedicated to this event."

Forum Island Countries participating in the exhibition include the Cook Islands, Fiji, FSM, Niue, Nauru, Republic of Marshall Islands, Samoa, Tuvalu, Kiribati, Solomon Islands, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.

Over 4,000 Japanese business representatives are expected to pass through the exhibition over the four days.