Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Govt should look at Pacific passport

19 July 2005

Govt should look at Pacific passport

The Green Party is urging the Government to give serious consideration to the idea of a 'Pacific passport' floated by visiting French Polynesia President Oscar Temaru.

"This suggestion is a welcome sign that French Polynesia is starting to see itself as part of the Pacific region, rather than as an outpost of France," Green Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Keith Locke says.

"The Government should embrace this friendly overture, and explore with Mr Temaru how we can free up movement between Pacific nations and create a stronger Pacific identity.

"The initial focus should be on New Zealand and the other Polynesian nations. So far, French Polynesia has been out of the picture, while citizens from five other nations - Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Kiribati and Fiji - are allowed to settle here under special Samoan and Pacific Access quotas.

"However, immigration rights are not the main thrust of what Mr Temaru is proposing. Essentially he is proposing a common travel document, which leaves people's citizenship intact, but enables them to live and work in whichever Pacific nation they choose. Such an arrangement already exists between Australia, New Zealand, the Cook Islands, Tokelau and Niue.

"Recently, Samoan people have been pressing for a similar type of access to New Zealand, and Mr Temaru is signalling that French Polynesia also wants to be considered. Both Samoa and French Polynesia have viable economies, which means it is unlikely there would be a flood of migrants from either country.

"However, to prevent freer movement destabilising any of the poorer island economies, New Zealand should up its development aid, and include incentives for Pacific peoples who come here for work and education to take their experience back home. Commendably, most of our aid does go to the Pacific, but the overall aid budget is still pitifully low, at 0.27 percent of Gross National Income, when the international standard is 0.7 percent."

Mr Locke said opening up borders in the Pacific region could bring benefits to both New Zealand and peoples of Pacific islands.

"In one respect, New Zealanders already have a Pacific passport, in that we have visa-free entry to Pacific Island states. Unfortunately, the reverse doesn't apply, with Samoans and other Pacific Islanders often finding it difficult to even get visitor's visas.

"Providing Pacific Islanders with visa-free entry to New Zealand for short stays might be a good place to start in addressing Mr Temaru's concerns," Mr Locke says.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Peters/Ardern Triumph

There are a lot of good reasons to feel joyful about this outcome. It is what so many young voters – the best hope for the country’s future – wanted.

Far more important than the implications for the Economy Gods ( is the dollar up or down? ) last night’s outcome will also mean many, many vulnerable New Zealanders will have a better life over the next three years at least.

Yet the desire for change was in the majority, across the country..>>>More


Labour on its agreement |Peters: Post-Election Announcement Speech | Greenpeace “cautiously hopeful” about new Government | ACT - Madman on the loose | E tū ecstatic | Chamber welcomes the outcome | Greens on their joining Govt | EDS welcomes new govt | Immigrant groups worry | Feds ready to engage new coalition government | Labour Ministers of the Crown announced


Climate: Increasing Greenhouse Emissions Hit NZ

New Zealand is seeing impacts of excess greenhouse gas emissions in our climate and oceans, according to the latest national report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ about the state of the atmosphere and climate…More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>


Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>


Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>


Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>


Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>




Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election