19.12.2013 - UNESCO Office in Apia

Season's greetings from the new Director and all staff of the UNESCO Apia Office

The UNESCO Apia Office staff with new Director Etienne Clement (first row, second from the left) © UNESCO Apia

On 3 December, Etienne Clement started his mandate as new Director of the UNESCO Office for the Pacific States. He and all staff would like to take this opportunity to extend their warmest wishes and season’s greetings to colleagues, partners and friends of the Apia Office.

As Director, Mr. Clement wants to increase the Pacific’s visibility within UNESCO, particularly through stronger links with the Education and Sciences Regional Bureaus for Asia and the Pacific in Bangkok and Jakarta, (he was Deputy Director of the Bangkok one prior to joining the Apia Office): “It’s challenging  to cover the whole of the Pacific from only one place, but I believe that if we put the UNESCO staff' expertise in Apia and Bangkok together, we can provide a reinforced support to Member States in the Pacific."

Mr. Clement’s area of expertise is the Cultural Conventions so he has a particular interest in promoting these among the Pacific cluster countries. Acknowledging the distinctiveness of the Pacific islands, he states that he would particularly like to promote the Intangible Cultural Heritage and the Underwater Cultural Heritage Conventions. Apart from working on culture, the new Director is also looking forward to engaging with the other sectors and in cross-cutting themes. “The International Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS) to be held in Apia in 2014 will be an excellent opportunity to showcase UNESCO’s work in Education, Natural Sciences, Culture, Social and Human Sciences, Communication and Information in the region and to increase visibility for the particular challenges of SIDS.”

With preparations for activities related to the Conference and the International Year of SIDS underway and the UNESCO new programme for the 2014-2015 biennium being finalized, the UNESCO Office in Apia welcomes Etienne Clement as new Director and, at the same time, sends its season’s greetings. We wish everyone a successful start into the New Year!


Director of the UNESCO Apia Office since December 2013, Mr. Clément, a former law lecturer, joined UNESCO in 1984 in the Dakar Office, Senegal. He then worked to develop international standards on the protection of cultural heritage in the Culture Sector at Headquarters in Paris. In 1998, Mr. Clément was appointed Head of the UNESCO Office in Phnom Penh and Representative to Cambodia. From 2005 to 2009, he was the Deputy Director of the Bureau of Field Coordination at Paris Headquarters, then Deputy Director of the Bangkok-based UNESCO Regional Bureau for Education in Asia and the Pacific.

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