December 16, 2017

APEC to involve smaller Pacific states, says PNG MP

PNG will deliver a functional Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting next year and deliver outcomes that will advance the collective interests of all economies.

APEC Minister, Justine Tkatchenko said the smaller economies like Pacific Island neighbouring countries including, Fiji, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Kiribati, Tuvalu, Micronesia, New Caledonia and Tonga will all be involved in the meeting.

Mr Tkatchenko was speaking at the opening of the APEC symposium in Port Moresby last week.

He said though many of these small economies are not the member of the APEC, they will be invited to observe and learn from the bigger economies of the world.

“For Papua New Guinea, our membership of APEC is taken very seriously,” he said.

“We and our neighbouring Pacific Island countries are developing economies and there is a lot to gain from being a part if this group and as a developing economy, there is also so much that we can contribute.

“The global economy has changed so much since APEC first met in 1989.

“In 2018 and beyond, we have to work to ensure that no one is left in the modern economy.

“This is no easy task, particularly in economies like Papua New Guinea, where we have so many rural and remote communities.

“We have a great challenge before us to ensure that our micro, small and medium enterprise can compete in the digital age.

“In this symposium ahead of APEC meeting in November next year, there will be many of these challenges.

“I am particularly interested in looking at how our economies can move to a cashless society using modern technologies.

“I am confident that this symposium, with its impressive line-up of subject matter experts, will set the foundations on which we can advance APEC;s ongoing agenda.

“Our preparations for APEC 2018 meeting are in their final stages.” Sunday Chronicle/ONE PNG