International Relations. Papua New Guinea press review

Australia has provided five portable containerized medical facilities in Papua New Guinea (PNG), which will be deployed in five PNG provinces as Australian assist to help with the government’s COVID-19 response and to support service provision. According to Australian High Commissioner Jon Philp, Australia is pleased to support PNG’s comprehensive response to COVID-19. Australia has provided around A$9,6 million (about K19 million or US$5,51 million) in direct support to Provincial Health Authorities of Papua New Guinea to assist them to prepare for COVID-19. «In line with the Department of Health priorities, the first three provinces to receive clinics include West Sepik, Western Province and East New Britain,» Mr. Philp said. [1]

Papua New Guinea will now be able to export its fisheries products to China’s lucrative seafood market. This was made possible following a signing of an agreement between the National Fisheries Authority and the Chinese Embassy in Papua New Guinea. Minister for Fisheries and Marine Resources Dr. Lino Tom described this as a milestone for the sector as accreditation as an approved country by China customs to export its seafood directly to mainland China. Dr. Lino said this achievement is the result of hard work that started in 2015 with the establishment of the trade lobby group, whose aim was to institutionalise the process of looking at alternative markets in diversifying export base for PNG’s important commercial fish species. [2]

However, the recent announcement of Papua New Guinea gaining access to China’s large seafood market has presented many opportunities for both countries to increase trade relations. His Excellency Ambassador Xue Bing of the People’s Republic of China to PNG Xue Bing said the partnership in the fisheries industry marks the first step towards many co-operations to come for the two countries in terms of bilateral and trade relations. According to Mr. Ambassador, the Chinese Embassy is currently in talks with the PNG government about its next step which is to get more agricultural products into the Chinese market: «You [PNG] are also producing many other agricultural products which is very suitable for export into China, for example, PNG produce very nice coffee, tropical fruits and other cash crops and it all meets China’s market needs […] We have a lot of job to do in the future and we are talking to each other to possibly sign a Free Trade Agreement», he said. [3-4]

Governor-General of Papua New Guinea, Sir Bob Dadae received aid, which included the personal protective equipment (PPEs), from the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China. The PPE’s were presented to Sir Bob, by His Excellency Ambassador Xue Bing. The PPEs include face masks and protective clothing that was recently brought in from China. The Governor-General acknowledged the government of China for the donation which he assured will be put to good use. According to Mr. Ambassador, the Chinese government is doing all it can to contain this second wave of COVID-19 transmission and to address this global pandemic. [5] [1]
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