Independence anniversary opportunity to reflect on PNG’s connections: Pato

National

The 42nd anniversary of independence is an opportunity to reflect on the growing connections for the young and culturally diverse nation of PNG, Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister Rimbink Pato says.
Speaking at the anniversary celebrations organised by the department staff at the Central Government Office yesterday, Pato said PNG had a rock-solid conviction of building a better future as one nation and one people.
“We are a nation made up of over 800 language groups and more than 1000 tribes and nearly 40 per cent of our population are under the age of 15 years,” he said.
“PNG accounts for more than 10 per cent of the global tuna catch of which  20 to 30 per cent within our own region of the Pacific Islands.
“We have the third-largest remaining tropical rainforest behind Brazil and Congo.
Interesting as these statistics may be, they don’t tell the complete human story about our nation and our aspirations for the future.”
Pato commended the department staff, adding that they had shown great pride and passion as members of the 100 tribes and 800 different languages that had built the nation.
“We have had an interesting and challenging journey together for the last five years and I know I can count on the support going forward in the next five years.
“I would like to thank the secretary, senior management and staff here at headquarters and overseas for all the support you have given me as minister up to this point.

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