Optimism about economy boosts PNG

Papua New Guinea’s endless potential was in the spotlight at the recent PNG Investment Conference in Sydney.

Staged from August 19-20 at Shangri-La Hotel, the conference brought together a host of senior senior PNG ministers, investors, facilitators, innovators and hundreds of PNG-focused delegates, to promote business and investment opportunities in PNG to the international business community.

It was a true showcase of the wide range of industry sectors right across PNG’s economy, while new business and investment policies of the country’s new government, led by Prime Minister Hon James Marape, were discussed.

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Commerce Minister Hon Wera Mori; Minister for Treasury Hon Sam Basil; Foreign Minister Hon Soroi Eoe; and Minister of Works Hon Michael Nali were all in attendance.

Pacific Trade Invest New Zealand was well represented at the conference, with Acting Trade and Investment Commissioner Manuel Valdez attending the conference and meeting with PNG Investment Promotion Authority (IPA) Chief Executive Officer Clarence Hoot and business consultant Vikash Singh.

Manuel says the PNG Conference is always a good opportunity to network with several key government officials and private sector organisations, who were available to discuss investment opportunities in the Pacific nation, rich in natural resources.

“The presenters also provide insight into a number of trade and investment opportunities for attendees and also the funding models which are effective in PNG,” Manuel adds.

Topics covered at the conference included updates from all sectors of PNG’s economy, from mining and petroleum, to agriculture, infrastructure, manufacturing, finance, services, aviation, energy and technology.

It focused on the major new funding of up to US$2 billion from the Asia Development Bank (ADB), which has led to PNG experiencing rapid growth with investment in road and bridge construction, and the upgrade of PNG’s airports set to double over the next decade.

Currently the energy sector is taking off, with the US$2 billion PNG Rural Electrification Project announced at the end of 2018.

Funded by the United States, Australia, Japan and New Zealand, this project has the goal of providing 70 percent of PNG’s population with access to electricity by 2030.

Other projects about to take off the US10 billion Papua LNG project (in which ASX-listed Oil Search Limited is a partner) and the US$9 billion Wafi-Golpu copper-gold project, led by ASX-listed Newcrest Mining.

The World Bank predicts PNG’s GDP will grow by 5.6% this year – twice the rate of Australia’s GDP growth.

It is projected to double its population by 2050 to approximately 20 million.

With such projections, the outlook for PNG is optimistic.


For more information about PNG investment opportunities, email Pacific Trade Invest Acting Trade and Investment Commissioner Manuel Valdez – manuel.v@pacifictradeinvest.co.nz


L-R Vikash Singh, PNG IPA CEO Clarence Hoot, Pacific Trade Invest NZ Acting Trade and Investment Commissioner Manuel Valdez enjoy the Papua New Guinea Investment Conference in Sydney.