By Daniel Etchells

Denis Massiglia (left), head of the French Olympic Committee, and René Temeharo (right), the French Polynesia Sports Minister, held talks in Paris ©SERVICE DE COMMUNICATION DE LA PRÉSIDENCEFrench Polynesia Sports Minister René Temeharo has announced the island of Tahiti is interested in bidding again for the hosting rights to the 2023 Pacific Games.

Temeharo has raised plans with the head of the French Olympic Committee (CNOSF) Denis Massiglia, who indicated his support during talks in Paris.

Tahiti, the largest island in the Windward group of French Polynesia, had bid for the 2019 Pacific Games but were beaten by Tonga's capital Nukuʻalofa.

The French Government previously funded the 2011 Pacific Games in New Caledonia and the 2013 Pacific Mini Games in Wallis and Futuna.

"We are positioning ourselves to host the Games in eight years," said Temeharo.

"The organisation of this event is a priority.

"We want to work with the state and all of our sports federations for the appointment."

The idea was put forward amid wider discussions about the development of sport in the French Polynesia, an overseas collectivity of France. 

The 2011 Pacific Games took place in New Caledonia ©Getty ImagesThe 2011 Pacific Games took place in New Caledonia ©Getty Images

One potential sticking point is the ongoing issue between France and the French Polynesia regarding radiation in the Pacific.

In November, the French Polynesia's Assembly requested that France pay close to $1 billion (£668 million/€906 million) in compensation for the damage caused to the environment by its nuclear weapons tests.

The resolution was proposed by the ruling anti-independence party without the backing of the Territorial Government, leading to a fallout within the party's ranks.

Papua New Guinea capital Port Moresby is set to host this year's edition of the Pacific Games, before Tonga's capital Nukuʻalofa takes centre stage in 2019.

The Games have twice been held in the French Polynesian capital Papeete on the island of Tahiti - firstly in 1971 and secondly in 1995. 

Around 3,000 athletes from 21 nations are due to compete across 28 different sports at the two-week long 2015 Games, which will offer competitors the chance to earn Olympic qualification for Rio 2016.

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