Papua New Guinea’s relationship with the European Union is growing from being predominantly based on development support, to increased trade and investment engagement through business cooperation.
The evolution of this relationship was discussed during a courtesy call to the Prime Minister Peter O’Neill by the Head of the European Union Delegation in PNG, Ambassador Martin Dihm (pictured) , in Port Moresby this week.
“More products that are made in Papua New Guinea are being sold in European countries than ever before, and European technical expertise and equipment is being deployed throughout our resources sector,” O’Neill said.
“We expect to see this business interaction to continue to expand as our government-to-government engagement with European countries creates greater opportunities.
“Papua New Guinea and the European Union have a bilateral trade agreement that enables free access products to the European market.
“This access to Europe is particularly beneficial for Papua New Guinea’s export of palm oil products as well as fisheries products.”
O’Neill further expressed his appreciation for ongoing development support that the European Union had given PNG over recent decades.
“The European Union is Papua New Guinea’s second largest development partner,” he said.
“Through this partnership Papua New Guinea has made a significant contribution to infrastructure expansion, skills and capacity development in rural areas, and the strengthening of the healthcare sector.
“Cooperation under the 10th European Union Development Fund has also facilitated rehabilitation of cocoa and coffee projects in Bougainville and East New Britain Province.”