Nancy Matapuku, the deputy chairperson of the Board of Directors for Airport Authority of Cook Islands (AACI). 23110207
Sustainability, connectivity, and collaboration are the key topics for representatives from various Pacific Islands airport authorities at the Airport Day workshop hosted by the Airport Authority of Cook Islands.
The two-day workshop, the first of its kind in the South Pacific, is
organised by the Airports Council International Asia-Pacific and Middle East at
The Edgewater Resort and Spa in Arorangi.
Nancy Matapuku, the deputy chairperson of the Board of Directors for
Airport Authority of Cook Islands (AACI), said the two-day conference that ends
today gathers airport authority staff from the Pacific who share their unique
challenges and opportunities.
Representatives from Cook Islands, Fiji and Samoa are attending this
“This conference is not just a meeting of minds, it’s a celebration of
our commitment to positive change. As we look to the horizon, we see endless
possibilities, and it’s also within these possibilities that we find our
greatest opportunities,” Matapuku said.
Matapuku said that in the Pacific, airports are more than just travel
hubs. They are gateways to dreams, the lifeblood of communities, and a
testament to the innovation and resilience of the people, she said.
“For example, our own Rarotonga International Airport was officially
opened by Queen Elizabeth II on that sunny day in 1974. So over the last few
years, the Airport Authority Cook Islands has ensured that our country has had
a safe and efficient gateway connecting Cook Islanders to the world today,”
“From our international Airport Authority to the Airport in the Republic
of the Marshall Islands, these airports are crucial to our regional development
and global connectivity.”
Matapuku said that over the course of the conference, they will look at
topics vital to their input, such as connectivity – “the bridge that unites
Cook Islands and other Pacific Islands with the world”.
“Small island airports play a crucial role in bringing together people,
cultures, and opportunities for better connectivity, rebuild stronger bonds,
foster understanding, and open doors to countless opportunities.
“We understand that the traditions on our islands ought to be preserved
for generations to come. This commitment to sustainability is woven into the fabric
of our island life. And we aim to carry the spirit in every facet of the
Speaking on collaboration and communication, Matapuku said that they are
working together and finding innovative solutions.
“We can tackle the unique challenges to our islands, making our airports
more efficient, safer, and more sustainable. So each idea shared at this
conference is a step closer to realising our dreams of a more connected and
prosperous Pacific region.”