US unconcerned about China and Russia's influence in Pacific

A top US government official says his country is happy to work alongside other foreign interests in the Pacific in order to improve the region.

China has developed a growing influence in the Pacific over recent years and this month Russia sent nearly US$9 million worth of weapons to Fiji with the negotiations for a second shipment underway.

However the US Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, Daniel Russel, said all countries could operate in the region effectively.

Mr Russel said the concern should not be around influence but rather sustainable development for the Pacific.

"They need it in a way that is sustainable, that's responsible, that is consistent with good governance and human rights.

"We work with all development partners and we seek to ensure that all development partners operate on a basis of global standards and transparency.

"With that as a stipulation, the more, the merrier," he said.


Radio New Zealand International