Dekena: Sound economic policy key to benefits

National, Normal

THE much-anticipated monetary gains from mega resource projects will be translated into tangible benefits if Papua New Guinea has a sound economic policy.
“It is good to learn from successful countries like Malaysia which transformed itself to become very successful country in Asia after going through difficult times,” Minister for Lands and Physical Planning Lucas Dekena said.
He highlighted this during a meeting with Malaysia’s director for corporate services international cooperation Norani Ibrahim.
Dekena said PNG is determined to develop its economy and is engaged in many economic activities, but needs technical assistance at different phases.
While in Malaysia, Dekena applauded the former British colony for having confidence to invest in PNG in logging, merchandise and other economic activities.
Meanwhile, Minister for Housing and Urbanisation Andrew Kumbakor thanked Norani for taking them through a session on how Malaysia came from tough economic times to build its economy to be among the strong countries in the World today.
He said PNG is blessed and is an island of gold floating on oil driven by gas but needed to devise good economic policies and strategies to reap maximum benefits.
Kumbakor said Malaysia started from a good agriculture base of oil palm and timber to the industry sector with a sound economic outlook.
He said it was good for PNG to work alongside such countries to strengthen its economy.
Director of National Research Institute (NRI) Dr Thomas Webster and chairman of urbanisation Max Kep also applauded the new partnership approach PNG and Malaysia are about to enter.
Norani told the PNG delegation that Malaysia was able to transform its economy after a bad 1970s experiences to become what it was today.
“It is through sheer hard work of the political masters and leaders that brought Malaysia this far, we have developed a new vision 2020 that spelled out that we should arrive as an industrialized and developed nation by then,” she said.
Norani said they established an Economic Planning Unit (EPU) in 1961 and had built on from it since then to make significant impacts in the development of the country’s economy.
“We have not borrowed any money off-shores and has been ranked 10th in the world in competitiveness,” she said.
Norani urged PNG Embassy in Malaysia to develop a bilateral agreement between the two countries which would further enhance closer ties and diplomatic relations between them.