New Caledonia rejects independence from France: Report

File photo. Photograph:( AFP )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Nov 04, 2018, 04.54 PM (IST)

Partial results from an independence referendum in the French Pacific territory of New Caledonia showed that a large majority of voters had opted to remain part of France, local media reported on Sunday.

With 70 per cent of voting slips counted, 59.5 per cent of people had rejected the proposition that New Caledonia becomes independent, television channel Nouvelle-Caledonie la 1ere reported.

Some 18,000 kilometres (11,000 miles) from the French mainland, New Caledonia is home to a quarter of the world's known supplies of nickel -- a vital electronics component -- and is a strategic foothold for France in the Pacific.

French President Emmanuel Macron is set to give a televised address after the results at 1200 GMT (11.00 pm Noumea time) on Sunday. 

He has largely stayed clear of the campaign, but declared during a visit to Noumea in May that "France would be less beautiful without New Caledonia".

Story highlights

With 70 per cent of voting slips counted, 59.5 per cent of people had rejected the proposition that New Caledonia becomes independent, television channel Nouvelle-Caledonie la 1ere reported.