Governor & StarKist CEO express commitments to keeping cannery here

Both Governor Lolo Moliga and the President & CEO of StarKist Co.,  Andrew Choe,  have given their commitment to ensuring that StarKist Samoa remains competitive.

The two met in Las Vegas early last week at the governor’s invitation.

Also present were Congresswoman Aumua Amata and a member of her staff from DC, the governor’s Executive Assistant Iulogologo Joseph Pereira and StarKist Vice President Michelle Faist.

A press release from StarKist issued Friday said that at the meeting the governor reaffirmed the American Samoan Government’s commitment to the survival and sustainability of StarKist Samoa.

And the StarKist President and CEO assured Governor Lolo he remains committed to working together with him to ensure a competitive and viable economic environment in American Samoa, one in which StarKist wants to continue to invest.

In the press release Choe thanked Governor Lolo and members of his cabinet, for hosting a productive discussion on Tuesday, November 7, in Nevada.

The StarKist executive took the opportunity to thank the governor and congresswoman for their support on reinstating the federal 30(A) incentive.

He  expressed concern about the ongoing erosion that is impacting the cannery’s  ability to be competitive stating that it is becoming progressively difficult for American Samoa to compete with other manufacturing locations, where labor costs and other expenses are substantially lower.

In addition, Mr. Choe provided an update on the current shutdown and the facility improvements that are underway.

This is the third week of a five week shutdown of StarKist Samoa’s plant at Satala during which new equipment is being installed to make it more environmentally safe.

Mr. Choe told the governor that he remains committed to working together to ensure a competitive and viable economic environment in the territory in which StarKist wants to continue to invest.

He said he appreciated the support and opportunity to work together with the American Samoan leadership for the good of the local economy and the American Samoa people.