ally Wyatt (far right), Chief Economist and E-commerce Lead with the Cook Islands Ministry of Finance and Economic Development at the launch of the E-Commerce Acceleration Work Plan. SUPPLIED / 23082814
Cook Islands has taken a significant step towards fostering a dynamic e-commerce ecosystem with the launch of the Cook Islands E-Commerce Acceleration Work Plan.
The strategy was funded by the
Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations Plus (PACER Plus) and aims to
drive economic growth, innovation, and job creation in the digital age.
This was unveiled by Prime Minister
Mark Brown on August 23. The plan sets forth a comprehensive approach to
enhancing the nation's e-commerce landscape, focusing on collaboration between
government and private sector stakeholders.
PM Brown emphasised the
transformative potential of the E-Commerce Acceleration Work Plan, stating that
the Work Plan "is a significant milestone in our efforts to build a
resilient and prosperous economy".
Roy Lagolago, head of the PACER Plus
Implementation Unit, expressed enthusiasm for the initiative: "PACER Plus
is proud to support the Cook Islands in its journey towards a thriving
e-commerce ecosystem. This work plan reflects a well-considered strategy that
aligns with regional goals and priorities, and we are confident that it will
have a positive and lasting impact on the Cook Islands' economic
The plan is designed with a phased
approach to implementation, focusing on key policy areas that include the legal
and regulatory framework, online payments, policies and strategies, ICT
infrastructure and services, logistics and trade facilitation, skills
development, and access to finance.
It is the result of extensive
consultations with industry stakeholders, government officials, consumers, and
international partners. It also incorporates findings from a comprehensive
legal and regulatory analysis, identifying priority reforms to support the
growth of the e-commerce sector.
The phased activities range from
modernising payment systems and adopting cybercrime protections to expanding
access to digital infrastructure and promoting consumer protection. The work
plan aligns with the Pacific Regional E-Commerce Strategy and Roadmap, ensuring
harmonisation with regional efforts.
The e-commerce plan aims to empower
government, industry, and consumers to collectively contribute to the success
of the e-commerce sector. By fostering consumer trust, enhancing digital
skills, and driving innovation, the plan is poised to pave the way for a robust
and prosperous e-commerce landscape that benefits emerging industries and all