Pacific visa-free travel backed

Visa-free travel for business has been part of most bilateral talks Samoa’s prime minister Fiame Naomi Mataafa has had with Australia and New Zealand. This is a concept that has received backing from the Pacific

Read More

Property owner to appeal emergency order after 40 fruit pickers from Vanuatu found living in one Tasmanian house

About 40 fruit pickers from Vanuatu were found living in a “cramped, hot and crowded” dwelling in north-west Tasmania where the fire safety risk was “obvious”.  The kitchen had only one working burner, and some

Read More

Opinion: 2024 Australian aid spending and effectiveness update

Australian Foreign aid was increased by 4% over what had been projected last year to bring the 2024-25 aid budget to $4.961 billion, virtually unchanged from the (inflation-adjusted) 2023-24 level of $4.900 billion. The

Read More

Third boat arrival detected in a week, but no one taken to Nauru

Two boatloads of asylum seekers intercepted off the Australian coast are being kept at sea rather than being sent immediately for offshore processing in Nauru, prompting questions about whether the government is trying

Read More

Australian Foreign minister Wong to lead bipartisan trip to Tuvalu

Australian Foreign minister Penny Wong and opposition counterpart Simon Birmingham will travel to Tuvalu for talks on security and climate change.  The foreign minister will lead the second bipartisan Pacific visit of

Read More

Australian officials scrambled to halt China-PNG policing deal

China’s top diplomat pushed for Papua New Guinea to sign a policing agreement with Beijing during a trip to Port Moresby last month, forcing Australian and PNG officials to scramble to prevent an embarrassment for

Read More

New flight route between Australia and Palau

A new non-stop flight service between Australia and Palau is being launched with the support of both countries’ governments.  The Palau Paradise Express, operated by Nauru Airlines, will fly between Brisbane and

Read More

Opinion: Australia’s superannuation rules leave Pacific workers out of pocket

The government must reconsider its tax on the Pacific’s poorest. More than 40,000 Pacific Islanders working in Australia are being unfairly taxed on superannuation contributions – enforced savings payments that they

Read More

Opinion: Pacific elder excoriates Australia on AUKUS panel with Bob Carr 

Former foreign minister Bob Carr recently described AUKUS as “fragrant, methane-wrapped bullshit”. This remark — tailor-made for the headlines — was covered by media outlets on both sides of the Tasman Sea.  

Read More

Ni-Vanuatu workers in Australian prisons: Minister

Vanuatu’s Minister for Internal Affairs, Johnny Koanapo, has revealed that many Ni-Vanuatu citizens are currently in prisons in Australia for a wide range of offences, varying from what he described as “very

Read More

Opinion: The falling demand of seasonal workers

Evidence over nine months to the end of February 2024 shows a declining demand for Pacific Australia Labour Mobility (PALM) scheme seasonal workers — those who used to be under the Seasonal Worker Programme (SWP),

Read More

Australia pays controversial Chinese company millions for Nauru’s new port

Amid intensifying competition in the region, Australia is bankrolling a Chinese government-backed construction company with a chequered history to build Nauru’s new port.  In January, the Chinese Communist Party’s

Read More