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Consular affairs: Palau consulate offices in Guam, Saipan remain open

The Palau Consulate offices on Guam and in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands will remain open through fiscal 2010, said Palau Consul General on Guam Jeff Kenty. In November, Palau Minister of State Sandra Pierantozzi had said the island nation’s consulate offices on Guam and on Saipan would close by the end of last year due to funding shortages. Kenty said the offices never closed, adding the consulate office on Guam requires about $100,000 a year to operate. Guam, as the entry point to the U.S. for Palauan citizens, also is a convenient location for Palauans to seek passport and immigration services, and employment authorization forms. Without the Guam office, Palauans would have to seek consulate services at the Palau Embassy in Washington, D.C.