Jacinda Ardern pledges $10m to Samoa's Cyclone Gita clean-up

Jacinda Ardern has pledged nearly $10 million to help Samoa's recovery following Cyclone Gita, and to boost local businesses.

New Zealand has given tens of millions in aid to Samoa in recent years, but it's dwarfed by the money being pumped into the region by China. 

There are number of new buildings, including a new Justice Ministry Building and courthouse - an impressive sight in the capital Apia - the national hospital, and a number of government departments all bankrolled by the Chinese government.

Samoan Prime Minister Tuilaepa is sick of answering questions about China's growing influence in his country and says there's no hidden strings or agendas. 

Samoa is just one of many countries to benefit from Chinese spending - the superpower supported 218 projects in the Pacific between 2006 and 2014.

Papua New Guinea's been given nearly $700 million, Fiji $386 million, Vanuatu $247 million, then it's Samoa with $247 million, Tonga $184 million and the Cook Islands $55 million.

By comparison, New Zealand's given Samoa $74 million over the last four years for aid purposes, which Ardern topped up on Monday - announcing an extra $3 million for Cyclone Gita. 

She also pledged another $6.5 million to encourage women and young Samoans to go into business. 

Construction will soon start on the next Samoan building bankrolled by China: a new police academy which is likely to be followed by a brand new sea port, which Samoa has asked China to pay for.