The Pacific Islands are a region of “Large Ocean States” in which 98% of the region is ocean, and the majority of the land area is part of Papa New Guinea. The ocean is essential to Pacific Islander’s way of life, yet there is limited knowledge of the oceans in region, and limited skill in using ocean data. Currently there is a growing awareness of the importance of the oceans, highlighted most recently at the 3rd UN SIDS conference in Samoa. Oceanographic capacity is limited within the Pacific Islands region, and generally resides within local meteorological services. However, there is a strong interest in increasing capacity to collect, analyze, and communicate oceanographic data across a number of sectors such as meteorology and climate services, fisheries, marine trade, and tourism. Increasing capacity in these sectors will increase the livelihoods of Pacific Islanders, and will allow them to more effectively engage in the global ocean community.