8 Feb 2012

Tahiti opposition says Paris building sale a folly

4:08 pm on 8 February 2012

The French Polynesian opposition has described the sale of the territory's flagship property in Paris as a folly.

Edouard Fritch of the Tahoeraa Huiraatira Party has told local radio that it is regrettable that the vice-president Antony Geros signed an agreement with the visiting French overseas territories minister Marie-Luce Penchard.

The transaction was a condition by France for it to release a 60 million US dollar loan, which is instrumental for the government in Tahiti to meet its obligations.

Mr Fritch says the President, Oscar Temaru, was out of the country while the deal was struck, and maybe there was sort of panic.

He says the building in Paris, which has been used to accommodate the offices of the French Polynesian delegates to France and the territory's tourism promotion agency, is now needed more than ever.