Minister’s ‘high tempo’ pace strengthening Australia-PNG ties, forging new development policy

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Australia’s minister for international development anf the Pacific Pat Conroy is off to Papua New Guinea, where he will commemorate 80 years since the Kokoda campaign and strengthen bilateral ties.

Conroy issued a statement on Monday describing his PNG visit as a continuation of the many, successive ministerial engagements between officials for both nations in recent months.

“I am looking forward to attending the PNG launch of a new PacificAus Sports partnership, visiting health and infrastructure investments supported by Australia and talking with young Papua New Guineans about their aspirations for the future,” Conroy said.

In Port Moresby the minister will meet PNG counterparts across a range of portfolios to discuss how Australia’s new development policy can best support the priorities of its neighbour comprising six hundred islands.

He will use the trip to consult and listen with the PNG government and its citizens.

Senator Conroy will also attend events marking the 80th anniversary of the Kokoda campaign, which he said recognised Australia and PNG’s important, shared stories and national identities.

“Australia’s relationship with PNG is profoundly important and built on a strong foundation of friendship and respect,” he said.

SOURCE: THE MANDARIN/PACNEWS