• PNG Business News

Prime Minister wants country to harness technology

Prime Minister James Marape wants Papua New Guinea to harness and expand electronic ways of doing business across all sectors in its development aspirations.

The remarks first made during this year’s PNG Investment Week in June, has seen much progress by many departments and businesses on many fronts as the PM continues honing in the message at every public address he gives, most recently a patriotic address during September 16’s independence celebrations of 44 years.

Citing an immediate area that needed this intervention, Mr Marape talked about the judiciary having an electronic case management system in place that has one point of loading complaints and an electronic information management system. This will address the high number of backlog cases.

“We also cannot fully capture the benefit of economic progress if it is not safe to operate and do business,” he added.

On social aspects we must, among other things have quality education, access to specialised medical treatment and a police force that is fully functional. Making reference to his appointment of Bryan Kramer from the opposition as Police minister when he became PM, Mr Marape said he had every faith in the new head of police to restore the entire integrity of the entire law system.

He further stressed the importance of having in place the Whistle Blowers Act and Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC).

‘If we have a safe environment on the domestic front, we give impetus to business,” he said.

It was during this time that the new PM first said to ‘take back PNG’ and directed the then treasurer to tell the nation what the nation’s debt portfolio was. It was also then that he indicated review of the entire public service system and laws and regulations that included reviewing the Mining Act on one hand. While on the other, he paid tribute to the business community and investors, saying changes being mooted were not to chase investors away.

Since then, governments proposed changes to the Mining Act, have brought about much anxiety to the business community in particular the extractive industries (Mining and Petroleum).

These concerns have been continuously raised through on-going consultation with government.

In a much recent media briefing by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the proposed changes to the Mining Act and the significant impacts of these proposed changes had again been raised. (see separate story).

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