Paris and Canberra discuss New CaledoniaChristian Fernsby ▼ | October 22, 2020
France and Australia have affirmed their intention to promote New Caledonia's further economic and diplomatic integration into the Pacific region.
Integration New Caledonia
Topics: New Caledonia
The talks came in the aftermath of the independence referendum, with Lecornu restating France's commitment to respect the Noumea Accord which permits a third vote to be held in two years.
The two ministers highlighted their two countries' cooperation within the Pacific Community and welcomed the excellent links between the Australian and the New Caledonia-based French military forces.
Lecornu also thanked Payne for Australia's plan to open a consulate in French Polynesia next year.
They agreed to continue their dialogue in Tahiti during the official visit of the French president Emmanuel Macron scheduled for March when Paris wants to hold a summit with Pacific leaders.
Lecornu has been in quarantine in at the French High Commission in Noumea since he arrived from Paris nearly two weeks ago.
He has been holding discussions via video link every day this week with New Caledonia's leading politicians representing both anti and pro-independence parties. ■