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Wisdom of Solomons? Shifting power dynamics in the Indo-Pacific

5th September 2022 - 15:00 GMT | by Harry Lye


The RN’s Batch 2 River-class OPV HMS Spey was denied access to a Solomon Islands port in August. (Photo: UK MoD/Crown Copyright)

While Pacific island nations may be small, including maritime zones, they constitute 15% of the world’s surface, and crucially they carry weight in international institutions such as the UN. Considering these factors, the Solomon Islands’ growing relationship with China is geopolitically significant.

In August, the Solomon Islands placed a moratorium on all port visits by foreign military ships, following the country’s refusal to allow the RN OPV HMS Spey and USCGC Oliver Henry to dock. The move comes as tensions between Western powers and China continue to simmer as the latter seeks to exert its dominance through military, economic and political prowess.

The signing of a security pact between the Solomon Islands and China raised concerns in the West about Beijing’s influence. It also fuelled fears this could open the door to a Chinese military base within the country’s territories. While not

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Harry Lye


Harry Lye

Harry Lye is Senior Naval Reporter at Shephard Media.

Harry joined the company in 2021, …

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