Prime Minister Marape Addresses Business Community, Apologises for January 10 Events

By: PNG Business News February 19, 2024

Prime Minister and Treasurer Hon. James Marape has extended his gratitude and apologies to all businesses that have supported Papua New Guinea over the years,  in an address recently to the business community during the annual Back-to-Business Breakfast sponsored by Kina Bank in Port Moresby,

The Prime Minister’s speech comes in the wake of the events of January 10, 2024, and other challenges the business community may have encountered.

“Thank you for all you have done to our economy this far, and I also want to apologise, not just for the events of January this year, but any downside,” Prime Minister Marape said.

“If you feel that your government, or your country, has not been a good host to you who pay your share of taxes, I want to say we are sorry. We apologise to all of you who pay taxes to Papua New Guinea.”

The Prime Minister reassured the business community of Papua New Guinea’s resilience in the face of adversity. He referenced the country’s history of overcoming challenges, including the Bougainville Crisis, and affirmed the government’s commitment to investigating the incidents of January 10, especially the absence of police services.

In efforts to fortify the nation’s security and justice systems, Prime Minister Marape highlighted his recent visit to Canberra, Australia, where he engaged with government officials and visited security facilities.

“We hope to do justice to you as continuous tax payers to our country as we move forward into the future,” he stated, promising a “bright future” for Papua New Guinea.

The Prime Minister emphasised the government’s focus on removing economic impediments to foster business growth and declared law-and-order as the top priority. He outlined the agenda for the upcoming session of Parliament, which includes restructuring the court system to expedite justice delivery, thereby enhancing the economy.

Further, Prime Minister Marape underscored the government’s support for the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) and outlined policies aimed at supporting businesses, including infrastructure development, utilities support, and agricultural price and freight assistance.

Reflecting on the country’s economic growth, Prime Minister Marape noted the increase in the economy’s size from K79 billion in 2019 to K110 billion today, highlighting the government’s goal of achieving a surplus budget by 2027 and debt elimination by 2034.

The Prime Minister urged the business community to focus on their contributions to the economy, promising that the next 10 to 15 years will be pivotal for Papua New Guinea, with major resource projects on the horizon.

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