Australia provides Forum Fisheries with a plane

A new weapon in the fight against transnational crime in the Pacific has been unveiled by the Samoa Police Service and the Australian Government.

A new plane has been introduced, primarily to assist the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency in monitoring illegal fishing activities in the region, and will be based at Faleolo International Airport.

Samoa Police Service said the plane will support Pacific Police Maritime patrol boats in "monitoring illegal fishing in our region."

It said it would also allow the monitoring of illegal activities in the Pacific, especially transnational crime threats.

Earlier this week Australia signed a new 10 year agreement with the FFA, providing it with US$14.7 million dollars.

This money, which is in addition to the aerial surveillance initiative, is to provide the FFA with the flexibility to mobilise additional resources and meet the needs of its members.