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The Pacific Islands Development Program (PIDP) conducts a broad range of activities to enhance the quality of life in the Pacific islands. The founding mission of PIDP, established in 1980, is to assist Pacific islands leaders in advancing their collective efforts to achieve and sustain equitable social and economic development consistent with the goals of the Pacific islands region's people. PIDP began as a forum through which island leaders could discuss critical issues of development with a wide spectrum of interested countries, donors, nongovernmental organizations, and the private sector.

Today, PIDP's role as a regional organization has expanded to include the following major activity areas:

 

As PIDP was formed at the specific request and for the benefit of the island leaders, the program is unique within the East-West Center--the only program with a defined geographic focus. PIDP responds to the needs of the island leaders by drawing on the resources of the entire Center if PIDP lacks expertise in a specific area.