Thursday, January 07, 2010

The year just gone, and a challenging one ahead for Papua New Guinea


THE Papua New Guinea government remains in power until an election in 2012 and economic forecasts until then look favourable.

But 2009 posed many challenges.

 Discouraging social indicators.

Government performance not up to expectations.

PNG already forecast to fall short of UN goals for 2015.

Opposition and people denied a voice in parliament.

 Laws passed without proper debate.

Key appointments not made on merit.

 Political patronage biased towards special interests. Government failing to investigate corruption allegations and misconduct.

The non-minerals sector remains undeveloped with a bias towards big mineral projects. PNG lacks internal capacity to properly manage two major LNG projects.

Human capital needs priority investment.

Overall, PNG is underdeveloped due to poor planning, inadequate service delivery and ineffective resource management.

Political reform is long overdue.

2010 brings more challenges.

Australia remains an important strategic partner.

Strong regional bilateral relationships will be maintained (Fiji is back on the agenda). China is a new foreign policy challenge.

PM Somare may well try to give the National Alliance party leadership to his son, Arthur, before the next election.

Offsetting this there may be splinter groups within the National Alliance that will challenge Somare’s leadership.

Whatever the outcome, PNG needs a new political order.







  1. I have never met a PNG voter who has voted for Somare and his National Alliance...

    Arthur? Same Pollie, different day?

  2. Lae Merona9:48 AM

    Steve, make yourself clear for us simple natives. What are you saying here?