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Cook Islands joins surveying strategy

Friday April 20, 2018 Written by Published in Local
Cyclone Gita caused widespread damage in Tonga, heightening the importance of geospatial information in assessing damage. Cyclone Gita caused widespread damage in Tonga, heightening the importance of geospatial information in assessing damage.

The Cook Islands has become a part of the world’s first regional strategy for surveying and geospatial capacity development.

The Pacific Geospatial and Surveying Council Strategy for 2017-2027 was launched last week in Tonga. It is the first geospatial and surveying strategy to be collectively produced and endorsed by a regional advisory body, the Pacific Geospatial and Surveying Council (PGSC).

The signing of a memorandum of understanding between the Pacific Geospatial and Surveying Council (PGSC) and New Zealand Institute of Surveyors (NZIS) signalled opportunities to enhance geospatial capacity and professional support in the Cook Islands.

Geospatial information plays a key role in strategic planning and financing, which fosters informed decision-making and sustainable growth. The strategy’s overall purpose is to assist with sustainable and climate resilience development in the Pacific Islands. Surveying and geospatial specialists from around the Pacific were at the meeting.

Tonga’s prime minister Samiuela ‘Akilisi Pohiva said the launch was timely, as Cyclone Gita had recently caused devastating damage throughout the region. Pohiva recognised the importance of geospatial information and surveying when assessing damage as well as when planning repairs and upgrades.

“There will always be natural disasters and hazards in our region and we must continue to build our national and regional capacities to anticipate and respond to these” Pohiva added. were in attendance for the launch.

The 10-year strategy is a global first, and is the first geospatial and surveying strategy to be collectively produced and endorsed by a regional advisory body. 

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