Vanuatu PM’s visit to Australia. Has it redefined Australia’s strategic partnership with the Pacific?

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Vanuatu’s Prime Minister Mr Charlot Salwai made his first official visit to Australia yesterday.  With security concerns surrounding China’s growing influence in the Pacific along with matters concerning climate change and education, the two leaders had plenty to discuss.

However, it was funding for a multi-million dollar internet cable project that was at the forefront of the meeting.  Australia has pledged millions to Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands for similar projects.  How will the project be politically and economically beneficial to Vanuatu and is this the start of a new strategic partnership between Australia and the Pacific Islands?

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