Japan, the United States, Australia and New Zealand are scrambling to respond to a newly signed security pact between the Solomon Islands and China that reportedly allows Chinese military fleets to make port calls in the tiny Pacific island nation.

The agreement represents a significant advance for Beijing in the Pacific, with the apparent terms of the deal enabling the stationing of Chinese military forces less than 2,000 kilometers from Australia in a country that has historically had close ties with Canberra.

Japan is considering dispatching Shingo Miyake, parliamentary vice foreign minister, to the Solomon Islands later this month, as well as having Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi visit Palau, a Pacific island country that has diplomatic ties with Taiwan, in early May, according to Kyodo News.