15 Sep 2005

French high commissioner in Tahiti says France in control of foreign policy

6:23 am on 15 September 2005

The new French high commissioner in French Polynesia has re-affirmed that it is Paris that determines the territory's foreign policy.

Anne Boquet said in an interview on RFO television that the constitutional name of the territory remains French Polynesia, despite a push by the current and former president to change it to Tahiti Nui.

In recent months, President Oscar Temaru has visited almost half of the Pacific Islands Forum countries.

Mrs Boquet says while Paris encourages the territory's integration in the region, France still decides its policy.

"The foreign policy remains with the French state and if the statutes has provided for associate powers, the president of French Polynesia can only use them, and has to to use them, in line with the constitutional rules and the approval of the French state."