Chinese Embassy in Solomon Islands blasts ‘lies’ in Australian media after firm denies acquisition
Published: Aug 02, 2022 10:08 PM
Scenery of Solomon Islands Photo: IC

Scenery of Solomon Islands Photo: IC

The Chinese Embassy in the Solomon Islands on Tuesday denounced "despicable" attempts by certain Australian media to smear and tarnish relations between China and the Pacific nation, after a Chinese state-owned forestry firm on Monday denied reported acquisition plans in the Solomon Islands. 

Certain Australian media have repeatedly and deliberately faked groundless information about the establishment of a military base and the bribery of the Solomon Islands government, a spokesperson for the embassy told the Global Times. 

The embassy spokesperson made the remarks in response to a Monday report by the Australian Broadcasting Corp (ABC) that claimed state-owned China Forestry Group Corp (CFGC) is in negotiations to buy the hardwood forestry plantation on the Kolombangara island. 

The island in the Solomon Islands archipelago "features a protected harbor, deep-water port and an airstrip," according to the ABC report, which also made mention of a Chinese slush fund that was activated to bribe the Solomon Islands government.

Such attempts, intended to smear and tarnish the relationship between China and the Pacific nation, are doomed to fail, the spokesperson said, noting that the relevant Chinese firm has publicly rebuked the Australian reporting.

A Global Times report on Monday revealed that the Chinese forestry firm, CFGC, denied reports of its acquisition deal in the Solomon Islands.

Over the three years since China and the Solomon Islands established diplomatic relations, the two sides have always adhered to the principles of mutual respect, equal treatment and non-interference in each other's internal affairs. Bilateral relations have made steady headway, with a continuous improvement in political mutual trust, the spokesperson said.

Additionally, bilateral exchanges and cooperation have come to fruition in infrastructure, anti-epidemic efforts, healthcare, the economy and trade, among other spheres, the spokesperson went on to say, speaking of tangible benefits to the two peoples. 

Both China and the Solomon Islands are developing countries. China has a huge market, advanced development concepts, as well as capital and technological advantages, while the Solomon Islands is rich in agricultural, forestry, fishery and tourism resources. Accordingly, the two sides are highly complementary and have broad prospects for cooperation, the embassy spokesperson reckoned. 

"A lie repeated a thousand times will not become the truth. We urge certain Australian media to abide by professional ethics and stop their despicable words and deeds that spread rumors and slander," the spokesperson said.

Global Times