5 Nov 2009

French Polynesia concerned over possible French funding cuts

6:51 pm on 5 November 2009

There is concern among French Polynesian political leaders that France may fail to disburse the full 220 million US dollars it has been paying the territory every year after ending its nuclear weapons tests.

A French Polynesian member of the French assembly, Bruno Sandras, says he won't vote for the French overseas territories budget as France has withheld part of last year's entitlement.

A cross-party delegation is due to go to Paris to ask France to keep its commitments.

But the French minister in charge of overseas territories, Marie-Luce Penchard, has assured French Polynesia that the funds for 2010 will be released if the investment programmes will be realised.

And in a letter sent to the media, the French Polynesian president, Oscar Temaru, says the French state has firmly denied rumours of the funding cut.

He says a meeting will be held with the French President, Nicolas Sarkozy, before the end of the month to discuss the funding issue.