French Polynesia - Future trends

After the end of French nuclear testing in 1996 and the subsequent winding down of the French military presence, the role of French subsidies in the economy has decreased. French Polynesia has been encouraged, with the help of considerable French assistance, to develop alternative sources of income. The territory has had some considerable success in doing so, and economic indicators suggest a positive forecast for French Polynesia. After sluggish growth in the mid-1990s, the economy has climbed from 0.3 percent annual growth in 1996 to 4.0 percent in 2000, while keeping inflation at around 1 percent. But French aid is a mixed blessing. If French support falters, or if not enough is done to address the condition of indigenous and economically excluded Polynesians, this progress could be quickly undermined. In the longer term, global warming and rising sea levels are expected to have an adverse effect.

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