Launching the Coconut For Life (C4L) Project

Vital Communications Office
Chuuk High School, Weno, Chuuk State, FSM - On Wednesday, October 18th, 2017, Vital FSM Petroleum Corporation (FSMPC) officially launched the Coconut For Life (C4L) Project. The ceremony took place on the site of the future Integrated Coconut Processing Facility (ICPF) and an Independent Power Plant (IPP) on the lagoon island of Tonoas, Chuuk. Representatives from the national government as well as delegations from all four of the Federated States of Micronesia made the early morning trip to the island, and were greeted with maramar, fresh young coconuts and singing and dancing by the Etten Youth Group.
C4L Project Ambassador Mr. Resty Shotaro welcomed guests at Ichimanton Dock and shared an introduction to the island’s history including its significance during WWII as headquarters for the Imperial Japanese Army. After a brief rain shower, Shotaro then led the procession of over three hundred guests and spectators to the ICPF and IPP sites. In addition to the two, fifteen-foot tall billboards offering a clear picture of the future facilities, the Chairman and CEO of Balance Services Group Mr. Rod Hayes spoke briefly of the ICPF’s initial capacity before introducing the concept and design behind the power plant his company has been commissioned to design and construct.
The Honorable Vice President Mr. Yosiwo George was invited to participate in a groundbreaking ceremony, and was joined by Chuuk State Governor Mr. Johnson Elimo, Yap State Governor Mr. Tony Ganngiyan, Pohnpei State Lt. Governor Mr. Reed Oliver, Kosrae State Lt. Governor Mr. Carson Sigrah, Tonoas Mayor Mr. Douglas Reselap, and FSMPC Chairman of the Board Mr. Faustino Yangmog. Chairman Yangmog concluded the Groundbreaking event by proposing a toast in honor of the distinguished guests and the Coconut For Life Project. A special lunch was hosted by Mayor Reselap and the people of Tonoas for all visitors.
Vital-FSM Petroleum Corporation’s Chief Strategy & Investment Officer Mr. Mathias Lawrence had earlier in the week presented the Coconut For Life Project termed “C4L” to the 11th State and National Leadership Conference at the Chuuk High School. Lawrence emphasized the Project’s intended purpose of increasing economic benefits throughout the FSM by boosting its agriculture sector, generating new avenues for clean water and clean energy, working with formalized producer groups – called Participatory Guarantee System (PGS) – that will comprise over 25,000 registered coconut farmers. The project is expected to increase FSM’s Gross Domestic Product by at least 5%. Lawrence also touched on recent progress made in the Company, mentioning its first export of over 80 metric tonnes of coconut crude oil in July 2017, and announcing a second export of over 60 metric tonnes of coconut crude oil scheduled for late October 2017.
In 2014, FSMPC was mandated with the task of revitalizing the nation’s coconut industry when the FSM National Congress passed Public Law 18-68, also known as “The Coconut Tree Act,” which dissolved what was then known as the Coconut Development Authority (CDA). FSMPC has since been taking strides towards increasing the trade in coconut tree products, as well as the processing, manufacturing, distribution and export of high value coconut products. Further information on the C4L initiative, this can be found on www.vitalenergy.fm/coconut_ for_life/.
PGS awareness meetings and workshops are currently being scheduled across the entire FSM. Community groups and individuals that are interested in forming a PGS, registering as a participating farmer with the C4L initiative can contact Shotaro for more information at (691) 330-4200, or send an email to info@ fsmpc.com.