The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)– combined with the Pacific community’s aspirations for a region of peace, prosperity, good governance, democracy, and the defense and promotion of human rights (SPC, 2009b) - are the proclaimed strategic imperatives for addressing the impacts of the global recession on Pacific women. The global economic crisis has exacerbated some of the shared struggles for women in the region, but has also prompted a rethink of traditional attitudes that have hindered women’s voices and efforts to better themselves, their communities, their nations, and the Pacific region as a whole.
Most Pacific island nations are a mix of independent nations and territories of developed countries, namely France, Australia, New Zealand, and the United States. Because of their dependence on foreign aid, nations like Samoa, Tonga, Vanuatu and Tuvalu, Solomon Islands, and PNG are directly affected by the impact of the crisis on donor countries, as donor countries may shift aid appropriation. While New Zealand is not a developing island nation, it has been included in this paper because it contains the largest Polynesian population in the world, is residence to more Cook Islanders, Tokelauan, and Niuean people than those nations themselves, and because of its very close social, environmental, and political ties with the Oceania group. French territories like Tahiti and New Caledonia are affected by the impact of the crisis on France. Similarly, the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia and others are affected by the policies from the U.S.
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