13 August 2003

RADIO AUSTRALIA | Radical proposals on Pacific integration in Australian Senate report:

An Australian Senate report says Pacific Islanders should have a special right to work in Australia as part of a new Pacific Economic and Political Community.

Graeme Dobell reports that the inquiry says a Pacific Community could also have a common currency, using the Australian dollar.

The Senate Foreign Affairs committee says Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Nauru are worse now than when they became independent. The 300 page report says Australia would face serious consequences if regional economies collapse. It says Pacific Islanders should have special migration access to Australia to do seasonal work. The report says Islanders will be less likely to overstay if they have yearly access to Australia, and are selected and managed by their home country. The Senate inquiry says the 16 countries of the Pacific Islands Forum should create a Pacific Economic and Political Community with the Australian dollar as the common currency.

Still reading, more later.

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