An engaging discussion between practitioners and informed experts will consider the latest developments regarding media freedom in the Pacific region. Pacific Island countries have varying levels of media freedom. An ability for the mainstream media to conduct enquiries without hindrance or fear of reprisal is an important element of a democracy. To what extent are journalists able to carry out their work in the Pacific? Have emergency measures designed to address the COVID-19 pandemic created obstacles for reporters on the ground?
There is growing attention to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Fiji, Papua New Guinea and other independent Pacific nations. But there has been little focus on French Polynesia, the country with the highest per capita rate of coronavirus infection in our region. Despite this, the French Pacific dependency is a full member of the Pacific Islands Forum, Australia has recently opened a consulate-general in Papeete and France-Australia relations are in the news!