31 Jan 2019

Canberra's courtship of Pacific continues

1:00 pm on 31 January 2019

Australia's Foreign Minister Marise Payne is to visit Tuvalu and Solomon Islands next week.

Australia's Defence Minister Marise Payne

Australia Foreign Minister Marise Payne Photo: AFP

Ms Payne's Pacific trip, which also includes a stop in New Zealand, comes amid a flurry of Australia's government visits to the region.

Australia's Prime minister Scott Morrison made officials visits to Fiji and Vanuatu earlier this month.

Australia's Chief of Defence Force, General Angus Campbell, along with the Australian Federal Police chief, Andrew Colvin, also toured the Pacific this month.

As well, Australia's Assistant Minister for International Development and the Pacific, Anne Ruston, is in Nauru today to mark the country's independence anniversary.

While there, Ms Ruston has attended a ceremony to mark the start of construction of Nauru's first international port.

Furthermore, veteran diplomat Ewen McDonald was recently appointed to head new Office of the Pacific in Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.