PNG Government has taken a learning curve from past experiences to improve the translation of wealth into human development and sustainable use of natural resources. National Planning Minister Charles Abel said this when addressing the Joint Parliament Assembly of the ACP-EU in Fiji yesterday. Mr Abel is leading the PNG delegation that included Member for Dei, Wesley Nukundj, to Suva, Fiji, to attend several engagements with the Africa, Caribbean, Pacific - European Union (ACP-EU).
On Monday, the minister addressed the joint parliamentary assembly of the ACP-EU on the theme of natural resources and spoke of PNG’s development experience and the current Government’s desire to learn lessons from the past and improve the translation of this wealth into human development, and improve the custodianship of these resources. He outlined some of the Government’s policies and interventions into infrastructure, education and health, and tabled the National Strategy for Responsible Sustainable Development (StaRS) and outlined the new Medium Term Development Plan (2) 2016-17.
Mr Abel then attended a European Development Fund meeting hosted by the Pacific Islands Forum secretariat at which he thanked the EU for supporting the PIF and MSG secretariats and highlighted the difficulties in constructing a regional approach for the Pacific. He also emphasized the gains made in the fisheries sector and the importance of a collaborative approach with tuna, encouraging greater support for the smaller island states, the need to continue to improve aid effectiveness and transparency around the regional assistance program from the EU.
The Minister then witnessed the signing of the 11th European Development Fund Regional Indicative Program, by PIF secretary-general Dame Meg Taylor and EU trade commissioner Neven Mimica, worth 166 million Euros over seven years. This program covers regional economic integration; sustainable management of natural resources and the environment and the management of waste; and inclusive and accountable governance.