Quotes from the news wire:

The cable is so practical, so important and so emblematic of the relationship between Australia and our key partners in the Pacific, the Coral Sea Cable will deliver for Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands a connected future, Payne said, adding that the aim was for the cable to be operational by December. China denies using economic aid as political leverage, insisting it considers the ability of a country to repay loans when offering finance. In a bid to counter China, Australia has offered A$ 3 billion( $ 2.03 billion) in cheap loans and grants to the Pacific. The competition for influence in the Pacific has soured bilateral relations between Australia and China. The relationship came under further strain on Tuesday when China confirmed it has formally arrested a Chinese-born Australian writer on suspicion of espionage. Yang Hengjun, a former Chinese diplomat turned online journalist and blogger, was detained in January. Payne on Tuesday said Australia held grave concerns about Yang Hengjun and the.

– Marise Payne

Found on Reuters  1 year ago    Technology

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