PNG PM CONGRATULATES AUSSIE PM-ELECT, THANKS MORRISON
PNG Prime Minister, James Marape has congratulated the Australia’s Prime Minister-elect, Anthony Albanese, whilst thanking the outgoing, Scott Morrison for his continued support to Papua New Guinea over the last three years.
He said this today in a media statement after Hon. Albanese led his Labour Party to victory in the federal national election in Australia.
“I congratulate Hon. Albanese on his election victory in Australia and look forward to working closely with him,” PM Marape said.
“Australia and PNG have always been so close to each other and we look forward to strengthening this relationship.”
PM Marape cited, as an example of this closeness, the fact that he had known outgoing Australian PM Morrison since 2008 when he was in the Opposition benches in the Australian Parliament.
He said PM Morrison had at that time taken a group across the Kokoda Trail.
Many Australians have had a very close relationship with PNG.
Our two countries have been close over many, many years.Our shared history goes well before our Independence in 1975, the dark days of World War 2 and even before that to the discovery of the Wahgi Valley by Australian explorers in the 1930s, the famous Morobe gold rush and World War IPM Marape.
“I look forward to working with new Australian PM Albanese in maintaining and strengthening the relationship between our two countries.
“Australia has always been our biggest and strongest supporter in as far as bilateral relationships have been thus far.
“We highly value our strong and vibrant bilateral relationship.”
PM Marape said relationships with Australia had been further elevated with outgoing PM Morrison through more trade, and added that he hoped to see this continue under incoming PM Albanese.
PM Marape thanked the Australian Government, in what was a first since 1975, for direct intervention of almost K1.5 billion in the PNG Budget.
“The Australian Government, seeing the reforms we were doing and seeing our honesty, decided to ensure for the first time that we received over K1.47 billion with zero per cent interest against the lending,” he said,
“They ensured that we sailed past 2019, in what was a hard year, but more importantly, we were able to successfully deliver over 95 per cent of our Budget deliverables in 2020.
“Australia also helped PNG greatly with COVID-19 intervention in 2020.
“We reciprocated, in a small way, by sending our soldiers to help Australia during the 2020 bushfire.”