Ambassador: EU eyes larger security role in Pacific

The EU wants a greater security role in the Pacific and will have no problem working with China in a region where Beijing has boosted its influence in recent years, the EU”s ambassador for the Pacific announced.

Speaking in the wake of Brexit, the EU’s ambassador for the Pacific, Sujiro Seam, told AFP he wanted the bloc to forge deeper trading ties and play a more active political role in the region.

Seam, who began his four-year term in September, said he aimed to change perceptions in the Pacific that the EU was primarily an aid donor which also helped out with humanitarian assistance when required.

“We are the largest free market in the world – we give the opportunity for Pacific island countries to access that free market through a series of economic partnership agreements,” he told AFP from Fiji, where he is based.

Part of what Seam described as a “re-balance” in EU-Pacific relations is an ambition for increased military and security cooperation.


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