Border security and transnational crime, which includes cybercrime, crime against children, and drug trafficking, are unique and pressing security issues in the highly interconnected Pacific region. Recognising that Tuvalu has been used as a transit point for transnational crime in the past, the nation’s domestic response has included passing the Counter Terrorism and Transnational Organised Crime Act, the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act, the Proceeds of Crime Act, and the Extradition Act; a Cybercrime Bill is also in development, and the Tuvaluan Combined Law Enforcement Agency Group (CLAG) works to coordinate information sharing. Regionally, the Pacific has further established mechanisms to respond to transnational threats and border security issues, including the Pacific Transnational Crime Coordination Centre and the Biketawa and Boe Declarations.
In a Tuvaluan context, preventing illegal activities from entering the nation or preventing local criminal activity from becoming transnational reflects values of preparedness (toka) and protection (puipui), where just as harsh living conditions in Tuvalu have led citizens to prepare for and protect against the worst so too does the nation strive to protect its borders.
Combat Transnational Crime, Especially Through International/Regional Cooperation
To effectively combat transnational crime, Tuvalu will work with other Pacific governments and authorities to address key knowledge and data gaps; ratify appropriate treaties and conventions; strengthen cross-border cooperation, technical capacity, and necessary facilities; and develop consensus on regional and international priorities. Furthermore, at the international and regional level, Tuvalu promotes the rule of law and shares information on risk areas and red flags for transnational crime.