28 Apr 2009

The state of the economy will be a key element in New Caledonia elections

6:55 pm on 28 April 2009

The cost of living, the economy and local employment are, apart from the territory's political future, the main issues in the election in New Caledonia.

24 lists are competing for the anti-independence and pro-independence camps in the provincial elections due to be held on May 10th..

The vote is being watched closely as the members of its Congress will decide whether the territory will stay with France or become independent after a vote to be held after 2014.

Our correspondent, Patrick Decloitre, reports.

"The cost of living: where does it come from and how is it that life is at least two to three times more expensive in New Caledonia than in France, not to mention the rest of the Pacific. And how do we adapt to the global crisis, even though New Caledonia has been relatively spared it has already started to bite through the nickel, because the nickel price has been dropping quite consistently for the past six months."

Patrick Decloitre