16 Nov 2009

French Polynesia to debate budget under threat of no confidence vote

5:49 am on 16 November 2009

French Polynesia's government has approved its 2010 budget proposal for debate in the assembly amid threats of a new motion of no confidence.

The budget includes a new so-called internal solidarity tax of 1.5 percent which is opposed by businesses and unions.

The opposition Tahoeraa Huiraatira has been in talks with the To Tatou Aia leader, Gaston Tong Sang, whose party is formally in government, to discuss ways of countering the budget.

The two sides have not excluded a no confidence motion which to be valid must name a proposed new head of government to replace Oscar Temaru who last came to power in April.

Mr Temaru says he is not sure if the public is ready to accept a new political combination given the problems some politcians have with the judiciary.

Although not naming anyone, Mr Temaru's comment refers to former and current Tahoeraa politicians who have been charged in connection with some of the probes for which the Tahoeraa leader, Gaston Flosse, is now in jail.