Papua New Guinea Investment Conference comes to Sydney


Senior executives from more than ten countries will gather next week in Sydney for the Business Advantage Papua New Guinea Investment Conference. We preview what delegates can expect from the event.

The view from the Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney, venue for next week’s PNG Investment Conference.

Remarkably, there has not been a cross-industry investment conference on PNG in Sydney in recent years, despite Australia remaining the largest single investor in PNG, and Sydney being its financial capital.

That will change next week with the running of a two-day Papua New Guinea Investment Conference at the top Sydney hotel, the Shangri-La.

The event, organised by Business Advantage International, will feature a range of keynote presentations, panel discussions, Q&As and case studies aimed at giving investors a long-term view of the potential of PNG’s economy and the opportunities for investments, joint ventures and partnerships.

The delegate list reflects the high level nature of the event, with CEOs, board members and other senior executives from some of the region’s largest companies registered to attend, from as far afield as Singapore Japan, Israel, as well as Australia, PNG and the Pacific.

Keynote speakers

Futurist Mark Pesce

Mindful of the need to provide delegates with information that’s hard to find from other sources, the organisers have booked two expert keynote speakers have been booked—one for each day.

Futurist and tech entrepreneur Mark Pesce will talk about the business opportunities for PNG in a world connected via the internet, while China expert David Thomas will provide insights on how the Pacific can make the most of China’s ‘One Belt One Road’ policy.

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Packed program

With a new government in place in PNG, the program will also examine the government’s new priorities, and how the private sector can get involved. Meanwhile, an economic update will be provided by central bank Governor Loi Bakani.

The conference program is designed to highlight opportunities across all of PNG’s economy, and across the whole country. As well as mining/gas, featured industry sectors will include agribusiness, infrastructure, technology, manufacturing, and services.

Senior executives from ASX-listed companies such as Oil Search Limited, Kina Securities, Horizon Oil and Highlands Pacific will be providing their own insights into the PNG market, while major PNG-based companies such as Kumul Telikom, Air Niugini, Anitua and Innovative Agro Industry will also be presenting.

Delegates will also learn about the growth strategies of a range of existing investors, including super fund Nambawan Super, fund manager PacWealth and the Pacific Balanced Fund.

Pacific Investment Seminar

Of additional interest on Day 2 of the conference will be the inaugural Pacific Investment Seminar, a ‘conference within a conference’.

Many companies that operate in PNG now do business elsewhere in the region, and many more express interest in doing so. The purpose of this stand-alone event will be to provide an update on the business climate in these under-reported markets, highlight opportunities for doing business, and hear from experts about what approaches work best. Speakers from Fiji, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and Timor Leste are scheduled.

Social program

John Cadman III

No high level conference is without a solid social program, and the PNG Investment Conference will be no exception. The highlight will undoubtedly be the Official Conference Dinner, a night-time dinner cruise around Sydney’s famous harbour aboard the John Cadman III, a vessel specially chartered for the event.

Our special guest on the cruise will be South Sydney Rabbitohs captain, Alex Johnston, this year’s joint top try scorer in the NRL and a player with PNG heritage.  The Rugby League World Cup will take place in Australia and PNG in October.

Many PNG delegates are expected to stay on for the weekend, which will see the commencement of the NRL Finals Series.

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