23 Nov 2010

China government and Fiji embassy play no role in Bainimarama trip

4:15 pm on 23 November 2010

The Chinese Embassy in Fiji says it has no information on Commodore Frank Bainimarama's visit to China and Fiji's Ambassador in Beijing, Sir James Ah Koy, says he has also not been involved.

Fiji's Information Ministry earlier said Commodore Bainimarama was due back last weekend but his visit has been extended.

Fiji's interim leader, who left for China ten days ago, is scheduled to be back by Friday when he is due to present Fiji's budget as the country's interim finance minister.

On Monday, the ministry of information said after more than a week of meetings with Chinese officials and business leaders, Commodore Bainimarama is hailing his trip to Zhejiang province as a success.

Commodore Bainimarama says he's used the meetings to assure investors that Fiji is committed to providing an environment where business can prosper.

None of the Chinese officials or businesses has been named.

China's Foreign Ministry website makes no mention of Commodore Bainimarama's visit.

But a spokesman for the Chinese Embassy in Fiji, Guo Da Zhi, says it's not unusual in China for foreign leaders to visit for business or holiday purposes without acknowledgment from the Chinese government.