In March, a draft security agreement between China and Solomon Islands was posted on social media. The deal, which was formally signed in April, sparked a furor in Australia and the United States, where it served as a stark wake-up call about Beijing’s growing influence among the Pacific Island states. China, Australia, and the U.S. have kept up an almost frenetic pace of diplomatic engagements with the region ever since.
Somewhat lacking in much of the discussion, however, was why Solomon Islands might have wanted the security agreement in the first place. What do the Pacific Island governments — and people — think about China?
In this webinar, recorded on June 28, 2022, experts discuss how the Pacific Island countries view China and China’s impact on the region to date.
Featuring Dr. Henry Ivarature, a Pacific Policy Fellow at Australia Pacific Security College, Australian National University; Lice Movono, a Pacific correspondent for ABC, The Guardian, and RNZ based in Suva, Fiji; and Dr. Patricia O’Brien, a faculty member in Asian Studies at Georgetown University and in the Department of Pacific Affairs, Australian National University, and an Adjunct Fellow in the Pacific Partners Initiative at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Washington, D.C.