Category Archives: Development

O’Neill Explores Opportunity with QATAR

By : Post Courier

 

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill has welcomed the opening of discussions with Qatar to initiate co-operation opportunities in the oil and gas, food production and processing and the financial sectors.

Taking part in a two-day official visit to the State of Qatar, at the invitation of its Prime Minister.

Mr O’Neill said now is the time to work with more partners in the global community to strengthen key sectors of the economy.

Meeting with Qatar’s Minister of Economy and Commerce, Ahmed Bin Jassim Bin Mohammed Al-Thani, in Doha last night.

Mr O’Neill said there are several opportunities the two countries will pursue in the coming months.

“Qatar has an economy that shares several economic synergies with Papua New Guinea, particularly in the oil and gas sector,” he said.

“Over the past decade, they have built a leading presence in the LNG sector and works with several of the same companies as Papua New Guinea.

“While both of our countries are active in the market, there are opportunities to work together on technical issues, and there is the potential for investment.”

He said as the country prepares for the next LNG project, it is important for PNG to work with other countries and gain from their experience as well as strengthen our position as a nation.

Mr O’Neill said there is also interest in Qatar to be active in Papua New Guinea’s expanding agricultural sector.

“Strengthening domestic food security in, as well as expanding our export markets, is essential for our country.

“We have enormous potential in our agricultural sector, but we cannot do this alone. We need to be proactive in attracting foreign investment, as well as strengthening our technical and skills capacity,” Mr O’Neill said.

Qatar has made substantial investments in several countries around the world and is looking at further expansion.

“We will maintain a dialogue with the Qatar government and relevant agencies as we explore the potential for investment growth and technical co-operation with the nation,” the prime minister said.

PNG an Official APEC Hosting Nation

By : Post Courier

 

PAPUA New Guinea is now officially an APEC hosting nation after Prime Minister Peter O’Neill met with all the 21 APEC economy leaders in Da Nang, Vietnam for the 2017 Summit.

The gavel and key were officially handed to PNG on Friday.

Preparation to host APEC – Asia-Pacific – Economic Co-operation Leaders’ Summit next year is well underway.

The leaders of the 21 APEC member economies who met for a week in Da Nang are determined to take bolder and sustained collective actions to inject new dynamism into APEC co-operation.

Leaders sought to formulate a shared vision for advancing APEC’s role as a driver of economic integration and growth, an incubator of ideas for economic co-operation, a coordinating mechanism of trade agreements, and a global leader in addressing pressing problems. These will be carried on as the discussion agenda in PNG when the country hosts APEC.

This is to better position people and businesses across the Asia Pacific to navigate complex and fundamental shifts in the regional and global landscapes, building on the half century of progress achieved through voluntary, non-binding, consensus-based co-operation between APEC economies that is well suited for today’s new realities.

“APEC has shown its dynamism, adaptability and flexibility towards changes,” Vietnam President Tran Dai Quang, chair of the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting, said.

“The Bogor Goals of free and open trade and investment, and the support for the multilateral trading system, as well as the growth of connectivity strategies and programs have provided the long-term orientations for APEC’s activities and afforded hundreds of concrete cooperation areas, including next-generation trade and investment issues.

“These have also responded to the new demands of the digital era. Yet, regional economic integration has been impeded by global uncertainties facing free and open trade,” he said.

President Quang pointed to unfolding world security and economic and social transition challenges that threaten the momentum of trade and growth recovery.

“Within a year since our last meeting in Peru, we have witnessed changes more rapid and complex than we expected,” he said.

“This requires APEC to uphold its leadership in finding new drivers for growth, trade, investment, connectivity and in finding ways to ensure that the benefits of globalisation and economic integration are equally distributed.”

Leaders are exchanging their views on how APEC can promote balanced, inclusive, sustainable, innovative and secure growth and employability; create new drivers for regional economic integration, strengthen the capacity and innovation of micro, small and medium enterprises, and enhance food security and sustainable agriculture in response to climate change, he said.

“Only by so doing, can we contribute to a peaceful, stable, dynamic, interconnected and prosperous Asia-Pacific,” President Quang said.

Internet Cost on APEC Agenda

BY : The National

 

High Internet costs will be among the areas of focus for the Apec Business Advisory Council (Abac) when it hands over the task to Papua New Guinea for 2018.

Abac co-chair David Toua said it would be an opportunity to look at opportunities for PNG.

“One of the good things about being part of Apec and Abac is that we get to see what goes on in 20 other colleague economies,” he said.

“Our responsibility is to look at those examples and see how we can utilise that within PNG.

“It’s very evident that reliable, affordable broadband is a massive plus for other economies.

“Our challenge is to sit down with Government agencies and highlight the advantages to be gained.”

Toua said these included programmes to help people socially and economically, and emulating success stories of other Apec economies.

He said the Government already had an agreement in place to bring down Internet costs through a fibre optic cable.

Meanwhile, Toua said having Apec economies and businesses in PNG for a whole year in 2018 would open up new opportunities.

“There is a certainly a broad spectrum of development from the Apec economy,” he said.

Tasked to Focus on Restoring Public Administration Structure

Press Release

 

** Acting Provincial Administrator Appointed in Southern Highlands – Tasked to Focus on Restoring Public Administration Structure **

The National Executive Council has appointed Thomas Eluh as Acting Provincial Administrator for Southern Highlands Province.

In making the announcement, the Prime Minister, Hon. Peter O’Neill CMG MP, said strong and capable leadership is required to overcome a number of challenges that have emerged in the region.

A distinguished officer of the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary, Mr Eluh, has been tasked to engage with community leaders to restructure the public service system and restore public confidence in provincial administration.

“As an Assistant Commissioner of Police, Mr. Eluh has demonstrated sound judgement and effective leadership,” the Prime Minister said.

“He has wide experience in the public sector, particularly in the Highlands.

“During the course of the recent elections, the Southern Highlands Province experienced a more peaceful polling period than has been seen in many years.

“However, this has since been undermined and this is not acceptable.

“Effective governance must be restored so that people in the province can continue to grow their businesses, and go about their everyday lives without inconvenience.

“The ongoing growth and development of Southern Highlands Province is more important than the ambition of a selfish few individuals.”

PM O’Neill said as Acting Provincial Administrator, Joseph Eluh will work closely with Provincial Police Commander, Joseph Tondop, to improve public order.

“I call on all community leaders in the Southern Highlands to work with Mr Eluh and PPC Tondop to strengthen public administration in the province.

“We all have to work together if we are to see the Southern Highlands Province reach its true potential.

“There is enormous opportunity for small business, particularly in agriculture, in the Southern Highlands.

“The natural attractions of the region are also very inviting for tourists to visit the province.

“With effective leadership we will see these opportunities continue to increase, and with this appointment, we are taking a very big step in the right direction.”

Mr Eluh’s appointment is for a period of three months, during which time he will restore governance structure and systems, ahead of the full-time appointment of a permanent Provincial Administrator.

Basil to Revive Radio Station

By : Post Courier

Minister for Communication, Information Technology and Energy Sam Basil wants all 22 provinces to have short wave frequency radio stations.

He said this during the Central Province assembly induction program last week Friday in Port Moresby.

“My role as the minister is to make sure that we go back to all the 22 provinces to make sure that we revive the radio stations,” Mr Basil said.

He said most of the radio stations currently using frequency modulation (FM) face the problem of signal loose in the rural settings as it is only powered by repeater and could not be able to penetrate when it meets obstacles.

“This is to ensure that people are kept informed and in tuned with the government of the day,” Mr Basil said.

He said to achieve this he will need the assistance of each local PMs of the 22 provinces.

“We will also require the support of the provincial government and administration for my department to roll out the program because I believe that the past decision made by previous government that transfers the provincial radio assets back to the provinces, the National Broadcasting Corporation and Department of Communication took the step back because there’s no funding to make sure we maintain those asset.

“I want to go short wave and we want to bring back to all the provinces capital in Papua New Guinea through National Broadcasting Corporation so that people in the mountains can have excess to communication,” Mr Basil said.

 

Govt Bodies To Use IGIS

BY MELISHA YAFOI ( Post Courier )

MINISTER for Communication and Information Technology Sam Basil says he is now looking at cutting all government office internet costs from K160 million down to K40 million.

Mr Basil said this after a brief visitation to the Integrated Government Information System (IGIS).

System (IGIS) project and the Internet Exchange Point (IXP) hosted by NICTA.

He said he has now tasked the Department of Communication and Information to prepare a National Executive Council submission for all departments including State owned entities to use the million kina (IGIS) project.

“We want all the government departments to use the data base and my visit yesterday, I have found that there are only few government departments using this system. The PNG government has spent considerable amount of money to set it up. It’s very important that any country around the world move their data into one so that we can protect it and we can make sure that we cut costs.”

“We will be cutting costs if we transfer all or allow the entire governemtn department to migrate into one place.

Very soon we will be looking at the examples of Malaysia and the examples of Singapore government how they protect their data base and we will adopt the same,” he said.

The Minister said they are now putting up a team in making sure that the installation of the cyber security system including the personnel’s and soft ware and hard ware systems are in place.

“PNG has great potential to expand its wings in the information and communication technologies (ICT) area in a big way.

“ICT services are vulnerable especially to cyber threats.

“And I personally want to ensure that our great investments in ICT like the IGIS and the internet exchange point, must be protected to serve the government and the private sector as well as ordinary Papua New Guineans and residents.

I am an advocate of responsible communications so cyber security and cybercrime policing are high on the list with details yet to be worked on,” he said.

Govt Keen to Create a More Friendly Business Environment

By : Post Courier

 

The Government is creating a more business-friendly environment for foreign investment.

And the public sector reform is essential for increasing efficiencies.

This was the assurance given by Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, when addressing the Australia – Papua New Guinea Business Council in Sydney this week.

“Australia is our largest investment partner, and we want to increase business opportunities,” he said to the packed forum.

“We want Australian business to expand investment into Papua New Guinea, particularly into non-traditional areas that are outside the resources sector.

“There are great opportunities in tourism, agriculture and the small to medium manufacturing sector.

Australian companies have technical capacity that will build our key sectors, and from their investment will have a sound return on investment.”

Mr O’Neill said the 2018 Budget will soon be presented to Parliament, and it will again be a budget that encourages business opportunities and create jobs.

“In a few weeks time, we will present the 2018 budget and there will be no big surprises. Our aim is to maintain stability.

“We have a long-term plan to reduce our deficit levels, while maintaining a healthy growth in the economy, and maintain stability around inflation and interest rates. These priorities are the determinants in framing the 2018 budget.”

Mr O’Neill said one of the most important reforms underway in the country is the creation of a more efficient and business-friendly public service.

“An important priority for our government is addressing the size of the public sector and to make it more efficient and business-friendly.

“We are going to streamline agencies that are not functioning efficiently, and introduce reforms that will raise their service delivery to the expectations of our people and business community.

“We will reform the entire system, and enable the private sector to be more engaged in non-core functions. The country is changing, with more graduates entering the employment market and there is more competition for jobs, particularly in the public sector.

“We cannot be complacent when it comes to the demands of a growing population and expanding business sector.

“Over the coming year and beyond that you will see a huge reduction in the cost of running the cost of the public service.”This will be accompanied by a more responsive approach in the public service for our people and business community.”We are making it much easier to do business in Papua New Guinea.”

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