29 May 2006

Japan's aid contribution to Pacific seen as international power play

6:51 am on 29 May 2006

Observers in Pacific Island politics are viewing increased aid contributions by Japan and China as part of a wider international power play.

Japan has pledged 632-million NZ dollars following a weekend summit with the Pacific Forum leaders.

Last month, China promised 588-million dollars in aid over the next three years.

Japan's pledge comes with the understanding that 12 Pacific island states will support their bid for a permanent seat on the UN Security Council, which China has already moved to block.

The executive director of the Pacific Cooperation Foundation, Vince McBride, says Pacific nations will look closely at the aid to see what strings are attached.