27 Jul 2011

Claims the Niue government is planning to bring in 100 Chinese families

3:30 pm on 27 July 2011

An opposition MP in Niue says the premier should explain the details of a scheme to allow 100 Chinese families to settle on the island.

Niue has been seeking investment from China for some years and most recently a group was escorted to the island by the Reef Group to look at investing in its noni farm and mothballed fish processing plant.

There are local reports of the premier'ss plans but Terry Coe says there's public concern at the impact such an influx could have on the island.

He says there's division in the cabinet on the matter and the premier, Toke Talagi, should publicly explain the nature of the scheme.

"Most of the people who know about it and it's not general knowledge, that's the thing, that they've kept it very quiet. But those that know about have expressed their deep concern and what are we trying to do when we've seen the problems within Fiji, Samoa and Tonga with bringing especially those people, the Chinese, into the community."

Premier Toke Talagi dismisses Mr Coe's claims as rumours.

He says there's no agreement in place but he says they have been talking with Chinese investors about a range of investment possibilities.