11 Jul 2017

Girardin due in New Caledonia in July

2:17 pm on 11 July 2017

The new French overseas minister Annick Girardin will make her first official overseas visit to New Caledonia and it will be before the end of the month.

Annick Girardin

Annick Girardin Photo: AFP

Ms Girardin is due to meet local leaders as the new Emmanuel Macron-led administration is planning to hold broad consultative conferences in each of the French overseas territories to identify challenges and aid their integration.

The planned visit follows last week's announcement by the French prime minister Edouard Philippe that Paris will organise New Caledonia's independence referendum in November next year, if the New Caledonian politicians fail to organise it by May.

She was also scheduled to attend a meeting with the Pacific Community whose headquarters is in Noumea.

The Pacific Community, known as the SPC, will mark its 70th anniversary at the end of the month.

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