Connecting to digital economy made a priority for PNG


CONNECTING the people to the digital economy was one of the themes during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation trade and tourism meetings, says Australian Assistant Minister for Trade and Investment Mark Coulton.
He told The National that this was a priority for Papua New Guinea which Australia was committed to support.
“That’s been a bit of theme in the last two weeks with trade ministers’ meetings and tourism – connecting producers, manufacturers or artisans. The theme coming through is the digital economy,” he said.
“So Australia is assisting PNG with a fiber optic cable going into the sea which will connect PNG to the world. The challenge PNG has is to connect to that cable. I think it has been progressing well and I am not sure on the timeline. But there was some issues at one stage of where it was actually to land. But I think that has been resolved.”
Coulton said it was vital to have people connected to allow for an exchange of information and get PNG updated on best practices.
“The digital communication will help overcome what has been a real difficulty in PNG which are barriers in joining people together because of the landscape and I think there is potential there.
“And it is a two-way street. Not only will that way of communication help them with selling produce but it also opens up the information coming in.”