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|Go to - FDNC NEWS FORUMS > Asia / Pacific > China seeking base on Vanuatu|
|Posted by: Flin Apr 10 2018, 09:42 AM|
| China seeking base on Vanuatu
Fears over China's growing influence in the Pacific have increased after reports Beijing wants to establish a permanent military base in Vanuatu, in what's considered Australia's backyard.
However, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop is confident of Australia's strong relationship with the island nation 1750km east of northern Australia.
Initial talks have already begun with Vanuatu, which could result in China establishing a major military presence and upsetting the delicate strategic balance in the region, Fairfax Media reported on Tuesday.
Chinese money has already helped finance a new wharf on the north island of Espiritu Santo, alongside an upgrade to the international airport.
The ability for China to dock warships and refuel on what would be their first Pacific base has rung alarm bells among Australian security chiefs, as well as New Zealand and US officials, who are said to be monitoring the situation, Fairfax says.
Ms Bishop said while China was investing in infrastructure around the world, in had to date only established one military base - in Djibouti in northern Africa.
"I'm not aware of a military offer being made by China to Vanuatu," she told ABC radio on Tuesday, noting the government of Vanuatu had also said there was no such proposal.
"We have very good relationships with Vanuatu and I remain confident that Australia is Vanuatu's strategic partner of choice."
China had been more engaged with the Pacific recently and its naval ships visited Vanuatu in 2017, but those sorts of visits were normal for all nations to conduct, Ms Bishop said.
The Lowy Institute's Pacific islands expert, Jonathan Pryke, says the new Luganville wharf development had "raised eyebrows in defence, intelligence and diplomatic circles" in Australia.
Ms Bishop said more infrastructure spending was needed in the Pacific but the key question was how it was invested and the terms of that investment.
But Vanuatu's high commissioner in Canberra, Kalfau Kaloris, was quoted as saying his country's foreign ministry was "not aware" of China's determination to build a permanent presence on the island.
"Initial talks have already begun with Vanuatu, which could result in China establishing a major military presence and upsetting the delicate strategic balance in the region, Fairfax Media reported on Tuesday."
After reading this story, it appears that the only people in the whole world that know about this is Fairfax Media.
"Fears over China's growing influence in the Pacific have increased after reports Beijing wants to establish a permanent military base in Vanuatu"
Who are these people who have these fears?
Sounds a lot like Fake News.
|Posted by: Alicia Apr 10 2018, 10:57 AM|
|Have a read of Silent Invasion.|
|Posted by: Bear Apr 14 2018, 04:30 PM|
| Vanuatu PM defends China deals but vows to oppose any new foreign military base.
Port Vila: Vanuatu’s Prime Minister has vowed to “fiercely oppose" any push to build a foreign military base on the Pacific island nation, while also defending his government's close ties to "friend and global leader" China.
In his first major statement since Fairfax Media revealed China's ambitions to establish a permanent military presence in the South Pacific, Charlot Salwai also maintained that a Beijing-funded and constructed wharf capable of accepting warships was entirely Vanuatu’s idea and aimed at helping its people.
“The government will fiercely oppose any attempt to build a military base in the country that is the happiest place in the world and which is a direct affront of its policy to promote peace and security in the region,” Mr Salwai said in a statement.
Fairfax Media revealed on Tuesday China was eyeing a permanent military presence in Vanuatu and had made initial approaches to the country. Beijing has been showering Vanuatu, which has a population of about 270,000, with hundreds of millions of dollars in development money over recent years.
Top national security figures in Canberra and Washington are deeply concerned about China’s ambitions for Vanuatu and its overtures to the small nation.
Aggressive lending of hundreds of millions of dollars on discounted terms by China in the South Pacific is leading to financial distress in the region and causing island nations to grapple with debt repayment.
The government of Vanuatu was forced to lift its GST-style consumption tax from 12.5 per cent to 15 per cent on January 1, largely in an attempt to help service huge concessional loans from China, while Tonga is scrambling to start repaying massive Chinese debts with a five-year amnesty brokered by the International Monetary Fund to expire in coming months.
China (the developing country) is moving to secure and 'develop' all it can - watch this space as it grows.
|Posted by: scepo Apr 15 2018, 05:57 AM|
| This may be the start of WW3.
China is going all out to dominate the world.