22 Mar 2011

Guam looking at long-term issues with US after Japan tsunami

7:08 pm on 22 March 2011

The Governor of Guam Eddie Calvo says Japan's earthquake and tsunami leave the territory with longer term issues to address like the effect on the local economy and the permanent transfer to Guam of Japan-based US troops.

Under a treaty with Japan, the United States is to move 18,000 marines and their dependants from their Okinawa base to Guam by 2016.

Mr Calvo says there's been a transfer of 1,000 US sailors and some military aircraft from Japan to Guam over the past few days to make way for the US recovery effort.

"This crisis and the movement of assets back to Guam just renews and refortifies the importance of Guam and the Marianas in the global strategic alignment of the United States with its allies."

Mr Calvo says no decision's yet been made on how long the recently arrived marines will stay in Guam as the present focus is on helping Japan recover and keeping people in Guam safe.