Summit praised for bringing opportunities to the country


THE Apec Leaders’ Summit has brought huge opportunities to Papua New Guinea like never before and it will be remembered as the event that set the stage for change in the country, Apec Minister Justin Tkatchenko says.
Tkatchenko told a media conference in Port Moresby yesterday that one of the obvious outcomes was the joint agreement by the United States, Australia, New Zealand and Japan with Papua New Guinea to bring electricity to 70 per cent of the country at a cost of about K3.6billion.
“This one agreement alone to bring electricity to 70 per cent of our people is a triple or four times more return on our investment in hosting the Apec,” he said.
“The US is increasing its aid and development assistance to the Pacific, including PNG, by billions of US dollars and that would not be possible without the hosting of Apec.”
Tkatchenko said Australia was also stepping up its development assistance and aid to PNG and the Pacific. “PNG is now getting the attention and the support it never used to get before. “There are other bilateral agreements signed between PNG and different countries as well, and I’m sure the prime minister will provide a statement to inform the country on the outcome of the Apec.
“But from the outset, PNG is getting the attention and the support it never used to get before and all this is happening because of Apec.
“It’s an event that is setting the stage for our country and the Pacific region to see the many changes and good things happening in the years to come.”
Tkatchenko meanwhile commended the Government under the leadership of Prime Minister Peter O’Neill and the PNG Apec Authority team and everyone, including PNG citizens, for making Apec 18 a success.