ASSESSMENTS

The Pacific Islands Emerge as the Next Theater for Great Power Competition

MIN READJun 1, 2022 | 19:21 GMT

Visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (left) and Fiji's prime minister Frank Bainimarama attend a joint press conference in Fiji's capital of Suva on May 30, 2022.

Visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (left) and Fiji's prime minister Frank Bainimarama attend a joint press conference in Fiji's capital of Suva on May 30, 2022.

(LEON LORD/AFP via Getty Images)

China's troubled agreement with Pacific Island nations highlights the growing competition with the United States and Australia for regional influence, which will grant bargaining power to the often-overlooked island countries. On May 30, China failed to reach an agreement with Fiji and nine other Pacific Island nations on a joint communique that laid out a five-year plan for trade and security cooperation with the region. Despite Foreign Minister Wang Yi's assurances of the deal's mutually beneficial nature, the prime minister of Fiji -- where the deal was supposed to be announced -- claimed that the region could not yet agree to a deal as it prized consensus. Other leaders pushed to delay or amend the deal, though few details are available on their specific concerns. This comes after the president of Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) urged his fellow Pacific Island nations on May 25 not to subject the region...

image of globe

Connected Content

Article Search