Chinese naval vessels to make goodwill visit during Independence celebrations

File photo of a PLA Navy frigate. Photo: US Navy

File photo of a PLA Navy frigate. Photo: US Navy

Chinese warships will visit Vanuatu to mark 35 years of the Vanuatu/China relationship on July 30. Acting Prime Minister Ham Lini paid tribute to the China’s recognition of Vanuatu’s right to independence, free from the “colonial yoke”. China’s Vice Foreign Minister Zheng Zeguang visited the Games site at Korman after a brief visit started earlier this week. (Daily Post)

A Reserve Bank survey has found that 32% of Ni-Vanuatu adults are “unbanked”. In relation to the ICT Days conference taking place at the National Convention Centre, the Reserve Bank of Vanuatu has been running an economic symposium at the Warwick Le Lagon Hotel on the theme of “enhancing financial inclusion for a more equitable, inclusive and sustainable economic development.” Acting Prime Minister Lini told the symposium “we must make financial inclusion everyone’s business, and we need to work together.” He highlighted that while women are more active in using banking services than men, they have fewer bank accounts than men.

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7 Comments on “Chinese naval vessels to make goodwill visit during Independence celebrations”

  1. Wim says:

    Just wondering about a third of the adult Ni-van population being ‘unbanked’. I find this very interesting information, as being ‘banked’ also makes people dependant on money. Being independent of money is pretty rare in this modern world, but also something that I think an increasing number of people would love to be. Vanuatu has a wealthy nature.. making it possible to be independent.

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    • That’s not quite correct, Wim. Having a bank account doesn’t make people dependent on money, nor does it dictate their degree of participation in the cash economy. Most people in rural (and even urban) Vanuatu use many other means of exchange other than cash. But it does make it easier for people to keep their cash savings safe. —Ed.

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      • Wim Roskam says:

        Hi Ed… you’re right. It’s good you nuanced this in more detail. I now better understand what’s intended with this. Btw, I’ve also heard of the Piggy Bank. Is this one example of exchange options you were thinking of? I really love Vanuatu. I hope we can make a second visit soon and learn more from the people.

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  2. William Fisher says:

    Bob You do know that the Chinese had nothing whatsoever to do with Vanuatu’s independence? Cheers, Bill

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    • Bob’s story doesn’t imply anything of the sort, Bill. China did not officially recognise an independent Vanuatu until almost 2 years after independence, as Bob alludes to.
      —Editor

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  3. Pete Bringans says:

    Do these ships have nuclear weapons? In NZ we are pretty paranoid about this and I believe rightly so.

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    • Vanuatu has been a leader of the movement for a nuclear-free Pacific since independence; indeed, PM Salwai recently reiterated the Government’s position in favour of a nuclear-free Pacific in his address to the 71st UN General Assembly in September last year. Vanuatu was instrumental in the South Pacific Nuclear-Free Zone (SPNFZ) Treaty of Rarotonga which bans the possession of nuclear weapons in the region. Vanuatu is a signatory, as is China, which has signed 2 out of 3 SPNFZ protocols. That said, if China was to bring nuclear weapons into Port Vila harbour, there would be serious diplomatic repercussions for them, especially given Vanuatu’s strong feelings on the matter, and the gravity of the occasion of 30 July.

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