French Polynesia

FRENCH POLYNESIA IS a French overseas territory situated in the south central PACIFIC OCEAN.
There are five inhabited archipelagos: the Society, Tuamotu, Gambier, Australes, and Marquesas island chains.
The islands are volcanic but the Tuamotu chain is made up of low coral atolls of which there are 80.
French Polynesia numbers 121 islands in all, 76 of which are inhabited.
The volcanic islands are mountainous and the interior is generally inaccessible.
Only the coastline and low hills are inhabited.
These high islands are ringed by coral reefs that enclose shallow lagoons.
Tahiti is the largest island and covers 402 square mi (1,041 square km).
The capital, Papeete, is on Tahiti and approximately two-thirds of the population live on that island.
Temperatures range from 77 to 86 degrees F (25 to 30 degrees C), and the climate is tropical and humid with a relatively dry season that runs from April to October and a rainy period from then on, when temperatures generally rise.
The French Polynesian archipelagos were sighted by European explorers in the late 1500s and early 1600s.
But Tahiti was officially "discovered" by the British in 1767 and baptized King George's Island.
The Marquesas Islands were annexed by the French in 1791 and the rest of Polynesia became a French protectorate in 1842.
In 1880, Tahiti became a colony.
The other South Pacific archipelagos were gradually annexed, and together the islands came to be known as the Etablissements francais de l'Oceanie.
In 1946, the islands became a territory and acquired relative autonomy.
In 1957, the Etablissements were renamed French Polynesia.
French Polynesia has its own government with a president and a territorial assembly that has 49 elected members.
The Tahitians elect two deputies to the French National Assembly and one senator to the French Senate in Paris.
The president of the French Republic appoints a high commissioner (haut commissaire) who is responsible for public order and safety and ensures that civil liberties are properly respected, but he or she does not exercise executive power, which is in the hands of the territorial government.
Autonomy was extended by statute in 1977, 1984, and 2004.
FRANCE retains jurisdiction in matters such as foreign affairs, currency, defense, public order, civil liberties, and higher education.
The Polynesian government has authority in all other areas.
The official languages are French and Tahitian (reo maohi).
Nuclear testing was carried out in Polynesia on the atolls of Mururoa and Fangataufa in the Tuamotu chain from 1966 to 1996.
The economic windfall was instrumental in the territory's development.
In 1996, when testing and the related funding came to an end, the French government made important financial commitments in Polynesia to ensure future economic growth and sustainability.
The economy is based on the provision of administrative and commercial services, but French Polynesia does have a relatively healthy fishing industry and produces black pearls.
The islands are also popular tourist destinations for the French and other Europeans, making tourism an important part of the local economy.
Nevertheless, government subsidies are essential to French Polynesia's economic survival.
The islands import far more (mainly from France) than they export (mainly to France), but JAPAN and AUSTRALIA are also important trading partners.

French Polynesia Images

Last News

- Dubai is announcing another motor festival
"The Emirates invite everyone to take part in the holiday devoted to the car festival that takes place from November 10 to 21, 2015.
A 12-day festival offers all the guests in Dubai to see a drift show, have a look at the last car models and of course make a selfie. Tourists will also have a possibility to witness the grand motor parade, where retro cars, trucks and motorcycles will be present. Motor “march” will cover the central streets of the city.
Car owners will take part in the most unusual car contest. Tourists are free to see all those weird cars in the contest. An 80,000 sq m “iron horse” exhibition will be also held during the event. Tourists will also enjoy the Dubai international rally, which is an important part of the festival. You can have a chance to take a sit in the car you are dreaming of. "

- A tourist has robbed a Thai bank to buy a ticket home
"The Australian tourist had a great time in Thailand, as we can see. He has been staying in the South-East Asian country this man realized that he had spent all his money and now cannot get home.
In order to buy an air ticket he didn’t have a better idea, but to go and rob a bank. The Australian broke into one of the departments in the center of Bangkok city wearing a mask and with a gun in his hands, which then turned out to be a toy gun.
23-year old tourist got 170,000 baht from the tellers, but didn’t manage to hide: he was quickly arrested by the police. Being questioned the criminal explained that he took the extreme measure because he couldn’t fly back home.
Thai police was not affected by his story; and by the local law the thief faces up to 10 years jail. "