This article examines the implications of a yes vote in a referendum over New Caledonia becoming independent.


This article notes the following points regarding New Caledonia's upcoming referendum:

  • New Caledonia is an overseas collectivity of France
  • There are deep divisions between its indigenous Kanak population and the, mainly locally born, Europeans over independence. 
  • Two referenda have been held with narrow majorities to stay part of France.
  • A third and final is due before Oct 2022.
  • Independence leaders have been unable to agree on a local government president forcing France to develop the local budget and increase its administrative role.
  • Some local leaders met recently in Paris with the Overseas Territories Minister to discuss referendum mechanics.

Some potential implications of a 'Yes' vote are:

  • Withdrawal of French funding, defence, justice, and law and order personnel;
  • Loss of nationality rights.
  • Need for a new currency and trade treaties. 
  • Loss of more than 10,000 French administration nationals.

The potential consequences of a 'no' vote include governance issues, sustainability and Kanaks wanting a greater share of the profits derived from its nickel mine.