Bishop launches new Pacific grant scheme

Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop has launched a new grants scheme to empower community groups carrying out aid projects in the Indo-Pacific.

The three-year "Friendship Grants" scheme offers Australian community organisations with experience delivering foreign aid up to $60,000 in funding.

"There are so many Australians who are doing so much in our region, I knew we should be able to leverage this in a a way that would have an even bigger impact," Ms Bishop told reporters in Canberra on Wednesday.