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05 August 2018


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Philip Fitzpatrick

Something also needs to be done about the Pacific leaders who fall over themselves in the scrabble to get personal-benefits-loaded Chinese money without questioning the value of a particular project.

They also need to stop using Chinese money to offset their poor fiscal management. Taking out loans to cover shonky budgets is akin to selling their country's future.

Michael Dom

A good write. Thanks for the clarity.

Australian diplomacy in the Pacific will get nowhere with this current government.

Malcolm Turnbull and Julie Bishop need to go.

Australian politics is strikes me as being very insular, with a smaller proportion consciously engaged in understanding international and more importantly regional relations.

There's almost two generations of Aussies with little understanding of the Pacific.

We're still a holiday destination to them

Thanks to their more open Pacific migration policy New Zealand is more aware of and intimately involved with Pacific island people.

It is a mistake for Australia to continue relying on their historical relationship with PNG, specifically WWII and independence.

That period was a whole generation ago and it does not strike me as being the rose-glass tinted, postcard perfect happy-happy joy-joy time most would recall.

Good and bad that period is done.

Australia needs to start a new phase in their relations with Pacific islands people and particularly PNG.

That process needs to start at ground level, with people to people relations, such as on this blog, through KTDF, Queensland business council and others.

Politics and politicians should take their lead from these relationships which, while not perfect either, are real.

The alternative, politically expedient and economically driven diplomacy, is what is most disgusting, disappointing and disastrous for Pacific people and the region.

China has less character for associating with island people. Australia and New Zealand have groups of people who have intimacy.

Work with this friendship don't abuse it.

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