Monday, December 15, 2014

Reopening Aropa Airport to create new opportunities on Bougainville

Prime Minister's Media

The opening of the Kieta (Aropa) Airport is another vital part of Papua New Guinea’s

national infrastructure that will create new opportunities for the men, women and

children of Bougainville.

Speaking at the airport re-opening ceremony alongside Government Ministers and

members of the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) last Friday, Prime

Minister Peter O’Neill highlighted the achievement of reopening the airport as part of what he said was a bright future for Bougainville.

“This is a beautiful day for Bougainville and for Papua New Guinea,” O’Neill said to

around 3,000 people attending the opening at the airport.

During his visit to Bougainville early this year, O’Neill had assured the people that

the National Government would work closely with the ABG to re-open the Aropa Airport.

“In January, I announced I was here to honor the National Government’s commitments

and deliver important projects to bring Bougainville back to what it once was,” O’Neill said.

“The National Government’s main focus is to bring services to and improve the welfare

of our people, especially, the generation who missed out completely.”

He said this was a very important day for Bougainville and Papua New Guinea because

 23 years of non-air service to Arawa.

“This infrastructure can now effectively serve the people of Bougainville,” O’Neill



“The welfare of the people of Bougainville is a priority for our Government.”

He thanked the National Airports Corporation and the board of directors of Air Niugini,

Airlines PNG and Travel Air for a job well done and for their support towards the


He also acknowledged the good work and commitment of past and present leaders and

apologised for governments losing focus along the way.

“This was to honor what our former leaders, like the Late Sir William Skate, former ABG

President Joseph Kabui, Sir Moi Avei amongst others, set out to do," O'Neill said.

“This government has renewed national government commitments and will continue to

honor them."

He said after forming government over two years ago, the National Government strongly

agreed to re-engage and strengthen relations with Bougainville.
O’Neill also assured the people that the National Government would continue to

honor every word in the peace agreement.

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