To The High Commissioner of the
in French Polynesia
I've received your letter dated the 27th of January 1999 in which you have asked me to resolve your situation on the French territory. First please observe that I was not the principle recipient of your letter of November 19th 1998, since your letter was actually addressed to the Gendarmerie of Hiva Oa.
Furthermore your request does not state precisely your intentions in regard to the length of your desired stay in French Polynesia; so realize that you must distinguish if your stay would be as a tourist, or if you wish to establish yourself here for a longer amount of time.
In either hypothesis, I declare that you are in violation of the law, since a Visa is required for Americans after one month and for Europeans after three months, and you've entered Polynesia October 19, 1998.
I hereby confirm that all foreigners, including members of the European Community, are under obligation to have a return ticket to their home country or must pay the necessary bond deposit equivalent to the price of a one way ticket to their home country.
Indeed, since the bill of the State Council of December 20, 1995, only French citizens are exempt of this obligation (the bill attempting to change this law, of which you mention, not having passed). European tourists actually having the three-month Visa may solicit in advance the extension of this stay to a maximum of six months.
Your general attitude seems to imply the assumption that, since members of the European Community base their actions on the principle of free circulation within Europe, they also have the right to free access to the French Overseas territories.
So, as I've indicated to the honorary council of Germany in French Polynesia, French Overseas Territory are not part of the European territory of the French Republic. Also, the Treaty of Rome and the Treaty of Maastricht are no more applicable here than the principle of free circulation for Europeans here.
True that there exists a decision from the Council of the European Community relative to the association of overseas countries and territories to the European Economic Community, according to which CEE citizens have a right of establishment and of free offering of private business in the territories. The only beneficiaries of this right to residency in Polynesia are those people who wish to establish an independent business activity here.
In all cases this allowance of residency and to conduct business is subject to certain factors which temper this right. Indeed, conforming to the above-mentioned association, in order to protect local employment, a work authorization could be refused if the proposed activity concerns a sensitive employment sector in the Territory.
Furthermore, "non-business oriented" members of the CEE must be able to justify sufficient resources for their stay without necessitating work. The same as for the "business-oriented" applicants for residency, neither of these cases have an implicit right to residency in Polynesia.
The residency permit is delivered for a period of 5 years. These dispositions are applicable to the German spouses of French citizens as well as to spouses of German citizens.
I hope that this general information will enlighten you on the applicable rights of foreigners in the Territory and that you will, in the future, behave with more moderation in your various written and telephone communications.
As for your situation, please send me by mail:
- A photocopy of your passport (pages relative to your identity the validity of the document and the date of entry in the Territory
-A copy of your boat papers.
If you wish to obtain the five year residency permit, you will also have to send all relative complementary elements: your financial resources (bank statement), your social security coverage, and your eventual investment project or promise of employment.
My distinguished sentiments while awaiting the above documents,
Monsieur Michel Jeanjean
The General Secretary of the High commissioner of French Polynesia
BP 115, Papeete, Tahiti
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