Vanuatu Gov't Refutes Assertions Made In Australian Newspaper

The Vanuatu Government has responded to an article published by The Australian on 12 March 2019, to refute assertions that corruption and resentment, due to unemployment by ni-Vanuatu, are fueled by China-funded infrastructural development projects.

“Whilst the media feel at liberty to publish anything for anything, the government want to inform the general public that the recent publication on Vanuatu-China relation is basically orchestrated by media outlets to tarnish enduring strategic partnership relation between the two countries,” a statement from the Office of the Prime Minister yesterday conveyed.

“The Vanuatu Government is honoring its relationship with China and respecting mutual process of communicating official matters relating to development priorities and concerns.

“Thus, any development news that are happening outside official communicating channel does not represent the official position of government.

“On the contrary, the Government has a very positive working relationship with the contractor in question.

“This is a relationship which continues to be governed by national legislations, guidelines and processes, and includes a policy of targeted skills and technology transfer to local employees and projects.

“By the same extent, the Vanuatu Government wishes to reaffirm its unwavering stance by principles that guide Sino-Vanuatu relations, and cooperation within the remit of the One Belt, One Road Initiative.

“In addition to a joint desire to enhance political relations, cooperation in infrastructural development that contribute to Vanuatu’s socio-economic development and increased business and people-to-people links remain integral components of Sino-Vanuatu relations, which continue to fare well on the basis of the ‘One China Policy’.

“The already amicable relationship will be greatly boosted by efforts to establish an air services agreement to improve air connectivity between the two countries, and the signing of a visa waiver agreement to ease travel restrictions, for official purposes.

“To that end, the Vanuatu Government looks forward to renewed and enhanced cooperation with the Government of the People’s Republic of China under the proposed Comprehensive Partnership.”

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