Trade and Investment vital, says Australian High Commissioner
Trade and foreign investment has helped drive over 30 years of uninterrupted economic growth in Australia says Australian High Commissioner to PNG Bruce Davies.
Mr Davies said this while delivering the Australian keynote address at the 35th Australia and PNG Business forum in Port Moresby yesterday.
He said as a result closing off on foreign investments for PNG is not the answer as PNG already has legislation in place to protect its emerging industries.
“The title for the forum this year – The Road Ahead: Optimising Infinite Opportunities – is spot on.
It captures the opportunity Papua New Guinea now has to capitalise on increased business confidence and international exposure following the successful hosting of APEC 2018.
Foreign investment helps bring more resources and activity to the domestic market.
It creates more job opportunities and is essential for economic growth.
Trade and foreign investment bring new skills and knowledge and is an important source of funding for technology and innovative enterprises,” he said.
Mr Davies said Australia continues to support PNG’s objectives for economic growth and are currently investing in key economic infrastructures adding that these investments has the potential to transform Papua New Guinea.
He said these includes maximising the opportunity of the big exporting resource projects, helping build and transform the country’s SME sector, improving health and education outcomes, and laying the foundations upon which the long-term sustainability of the economy will grow.
“Papua New Guinea is right to be concerned about ensuring that investment in this country supports economic growth while protecting its emerging industries.
Investments that are not transparent, that are discriminatory, that do not adhere to robust standards, or that deliver unsustainable debt burdens, are not helpful.
However, closing off foreign investment is not the answer.
Papua New Guinea already has legislation in place to protect its emerging industries.
Enforcement is the key issue. Improved enforcement is needed to ensure the legislation is effective,” he said.