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Samoa moves to Alert Level 1 and shift to daily flights next month

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Samoa will move to Alert Level One as of midnight Tuesday 31 May following signs that the Covid-19 virus appears to have peaked in early May and there is now a downward trending of new infections. Announcing the changes, Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mataafa said the campaign drive through the Ministry of Health, in close collaboration with the Disaster Advisory...

China falls short on big Pacific deal but finds smaller wins

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By Aileen Torres-Bennett and Nick Perry  China fell short Monday on a bold plan to have 10 Pacific nations endorse a sweeping new agreement covering everything from security to fisheries as some in the region expressed deep concerns. But there have been plenty of smaller wins for China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi as he continues an island-hopping tour of the...

World Rugby Sevens Series returning to Hamilton in 2023 after two-year absence

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International sevens action will return to Hamilton this summer after a two-year absence due to the Covid-19 pandemic. New Zealand Rugby announced the return of New Zealand's biggest sporting party, where the Black Ferns Sevens and All Blacks Sevens will defend their respective titles, at FMG Stadium Waikato on 21-22 January 2023. The resurrected Hamilton event, which returns to the World...

Israel Folau, Charles Piutau and Malakai Fekitoa headline Tonga squad

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Former All Blacks and Wallabies stars Israel Folau, Charles Piutau and Malakai Fekitoa headline the newly-named Tonga squad to compete in July’s Pacific Nations Cup and World Cup qualifier. All three players were included in Toutai Kefu’s 31-man ‘Ikale Tahi squad to face Fiji, Samoa and Australia A in the Pacific Nations Cup, which precedes a World Cup playoff match...

China’s foreign minister to meet with Pacific nations amid push for sweeping regional deal

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China’s foreign minister will meet with his Pacific counterparts in a crucial meeting on Monday during which China is expected to encourage Pacific countries to sign up to a sweeping regional economic and security deal. The meeting comes midway through foreign minister Wang Yi’s marathon tour of the Pacific, visiting eight countries in 10 days, in a move that security...

Palau’s President urges Pacific neighbours to ‘tread cautiously’ in agreements with China

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The President of the Pacific island nation of Palau has recalled World War Two in a warning other regional leaders that wide-ranging trade and security pacts with China could have harmful consequences. China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi is on an eight-country Pacific tour involving discussions with Pacific leaders about signing up to a regional agreement on economy, security and policing. It...

China’s influence in the Pacific is growing, former Tuvalu PM says it’s a ‘scary development’

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China's growing influence in the Pacific is a “scary development” for the region, according to the former prime minister and current opposition leader of Pacific island nation Tuvalu. In an interview with SBS News, Enele Sopoaga said a leaked document outlining China’s intention to form a pact with Pacific island nationsMcomes at an unstable time for the region. “The decision to...

Forum SG Puna welcomes China’s climate change commitments

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Pacific Islands Forum Secretary General Henry Puna has welcomed China’s climate change commitments. He made the statement when he met with Chinese State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Suva. In a statement, SG Puna said China is a long standing and important Forum Dialogue Partner, and development partner, to our Blue Pacific region. “Recognising this, we are keen to build...

Vanuatu declares a climate emergency

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Vanuatu has become the first Pacific Small Island Developing State to declare it is facing a climate emergency. In a Twitter post, the leader of the opposition Ralph Regenvanu announced parliament passed a 17-point resolution declaring a climate emergency last Friday. Regenvanu said under Point 1 of the resolution, “The Parliament declares that a climate emergency exists that is now existentially...

Fiji PM calls meeting with new Australia foreign minister ‘wonderful’

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Fijian Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama said on Saturday he had a “wonderful meeting” with Australia's Foreign Minister Penny Wong, who travelled to Fiji days after being sworn in to show the new government's attention to the Pacific Islands. “Fiji is not anyone’s backyard - we are a part of a Pacific family," Bainimarama wrote on Twitter, posting a picture of...

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French President Macron says priority is return to calm amid unrest in New Caledonia,...

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President Emmanuel Macron arrived Thursday in riot-hit New Caledonia, having crossed the globe by plane in a high-profile show of support for the Pacific...

Fiji’s three-speed economy

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By Kishti Sen & Tom Kenny, International Economist & Senior International Economist, ANZ Fiji’s swift rebound from the pandemic-induced downturn has been impressive. The economy...

Law of the sea ruling is an ‘important milestone’ for climate and ocean action:...

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The Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF) strongly supports the new advisory opinion published by the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, which...