New Zealand High Commission Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea

PNG MP’s join Pacific Island colleagues in New Zealand

New Zealand is playing host this week to more than sixty Pacific parliamentarians and political leaders, including eight MP’s from the National Parliament of Papua New Guinea.  They are in Wellington for the Pacific Parliamentary and Political Leaders Forum, organised by the New Zealand Parliament to give Pacific politicians and leaders and New Zealand MPs an opportunity to strengthen their networks in the region.

“This event will bring leaders from all Pacific states and entities to Wellington for a forum focused on promoting regional cooperation, stronger governance, and helping leaders across the region to get to know one another,” said New Zealand MP and former High Commissioner to PNG John Hayes.  “The breadth of this forum is what gives it such strength.  Invited speakers will address items of regional concern such as energy, health issues, resources, job creation, interaction between the public and private sectors, environmental issues, the importance of a free press, and strong transparent governance.”

Media and government, problems of isolation and delivery of services, as well as the economic outlook for the region, will also be discussed.  The program is structured around discussion groups and debates in New Zealand’s Parliament between visiting and New Zealand MPs and starts with a three hour debate on Pacific issues on Thursday.

“We are thrilled to have such strong representation from Papua New Guinea MPs at the Forum” said New Zealand High Commissioner to PNG Marion Crawshaw.  “Their participation will strengthen the connection between PNG’s Parliament, New Zealand’s, and other parliaments across the Pacific”.  Ms Crawshaw said that people can follow the Forum, which runs from 18 to 22 April, on Twitter @PACLeadersForum.

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