Posted By Staff Reporter
PNG Prime Minister, Peter O'Neill, welcomed the Prime Minister of
the Solomon Islands, Manasseh Sogavare MP, in Port Moresby yesterday.
Visiting in his capacity as the current Chair of the Melanesian Spearhead Group, Prime Minister Sogavare is undertaking a Capital Visit to Papua New Guinea.
PM O’Neill said Papua New Guinea continues to be a strong supporter of the work of the MSG Secretariat, that is located in Vanuatu, but it is important for the Secretariat to evolve and maintain connection to the needs of the people.
"The work of MSG has to stay relevant for the people of the region,” Prime Minister O’Neill said.
“Our MSG countries are facing global economic challenges so we are also being very careful with our expenditure.
“MSG must look at its operations and ensure funds are being effectively utilised.”
The Prime Ministers also discussed the disaster in Fiji following Cyclone Winston in the past week.
“The disaster from the cyclone in Fiji was widespread, and the region expresses its sympathies for the unfortunate loss of life.
“MSG, as well as the Pacific Islands’ Forum, and individual countries look to requests for assistance that will come from Fiji in the recovery phase of the disaster.
“For Papua New Guinea, we will deliver any support direct to where it is needed, as has been the process with drought relief in Papua New Guinea, instead of sending this through bureaucratic channels.”
PM O’Neill said the issue of the Indonesian provinces of Papua and West Papua was discussed.
“As Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, and as current Chair of the Pacific Islands Forum, I am maintaining ongoing dialogue with the Government of Indonesia and with President Joko Widodo.
“We will continue this dialogue in a respectful manner with a focus on building mutual understanding in relation to safety and security of our millions of Melanesian Brothers and Sisters across our border.”
Prime Minister O’Neill further reiterated his invitation to Prime Minister Sogavare to visit Papua New Guinea for the Leaders’ Summit of African, Caribbean (ACP) and Pacific Group of States this year.
“I have invited Prime Minister Sogavare to visit Papua New Guinea at the end of May, with the leaders and delegations of the other 79 ACP member countries.
“This meeting will be an opportunity for all ACP countries to progress a number of issues of regional significance, including advancing economic and social development
in a challenging global economy.”
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