Beijing helps Solomon expand its largest hospital in a battle of influence in the South Pacific

As a sign of a strong ongoing relationship between Beijing and the Solomon Islands government, officials from both countries have approved the construction of a new medical center at the National Referral Hospital in the capital Honiara.

With 300 beds and 50 doctors, the hospital is the largest hospital in the Pacific and focuses on diagnosing heart problems before expanding to provide kidney specialty services and other non-communicable diseases. Is placed.

“I am very grateful to the government and the people of China,” said Pauline McNeill, Under Secretary of Health. statement Released by the Solomon Government.

McNeil signed the minutes of an on-site feasibility study with Yao Ming, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary of the Chinese Embassy in the Solomon Islands.

Meanwhile, on May 3, a Japanese delegation also approved an initial investigation to build Kilu’ufi Hospital on the adjacent island of Malaita.

The actions of Tokyo and Beijing reflect the ongoing battle for influence in the Pacific between democracies and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

Concerns have risen significantly in recent weeks after the signing of a security agreement between the CCP and the Solomon Islands government, which could open the door to militarization in the South China Sea-like South Pacific region.

Beijing could send police, troops, weapons, and even naval vessels with the consent of the Solomon Islands, according to a leaked draft of “Security Cooperation between the Solomon Islands and the People’s Republic of China (PRC).” I can do it. “Protecting the safety of the Chinese and the major projects of the Solomon Islands”.

The Solomon Islands were the site of major battles during World War II, and their significant location and impact on significant sea routes caused more than 7,000 casualties to the Allies.

Despite complaints from Australian, Japanese and US authorities, Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavale has supported the agreement.

Sogavale is not very popular in this country with a history of civil war, and there are concerns that it may try to block the progress of the 2023 national elections by launching a false flag operation.

South Pacific expert Cleo Pascal stopped working with the prime minister in hopes of changing his mindset to democracies, and instead entered a period of stability in Townsville in 2000. He asked to explain the implementation of the peace agreement. And the national government for the country.

Meanwhile, Grant Newsham, a former US Marine Corps officer, called on democratic allies to spotlight bribery claims filed by the CCP.

“All transactions in Solomon with China and other foreign companies should be subject to public scrutiny,” a senior researcher at the Yorktown Institute wrote in The Epoch Times. “In addition to undermining Beijing’s sabotage, revealing transparency and corrupt activity encourages local politicians and groups who want an honest and consensus government and oppose CCP rule. To do.”

Daniel Y. Ten


Daniel Y. Teng is based in Sydney. He focuses on national politics, including federal politics, COVID-19 response, and relations between Australia and China. Do you have a hint? Contact him at [email protected]