Australian Prime Minister flies in to Papua New Guinea to talk business, law and order, and health


BAI logo no textCloser economic engagement with Far North Queensland, law and order, and health will be on the agenda when Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd visits Papua New Guinea today.

Rudd will be the second Australian Prime Minister to visit PNG in the past two months, following former PM Julia Gillard’s visit in May.

In advance of his visit, Rudd explained to journalists the reasons behind it:

‘The reason I’m going to Papua New Guinea, is based on a conversation I had with Premier O’Neill in Brisbane not long ago.

‘The number one reason is that here in Far North Queensland, there is huge economic engagement with Papua New Guinea. We want to make that closer and better and mutually profitable for both business communities.

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‘The second reason is that in Papua New Guinea, the Prime Minister has told me they have real law and order problems in some of their major cities. That concerns me. I’m going to be talking to him about what we can do to enhance our cooperation there.

Also, there are genuine issues with their hospital system where some of the major referral hospitals are not functioning properly.’

‘Kevin Rudd only recently replaced Julia Gillard as Prime Minister of Australia. His visit to our country reinforces the very strong relationship PNG enjoys with Australia,’  said PNG’s Prime MIninster Peter O’Neill.

Rudd will be accompanied by Australian Trade Minister, Richard Marles and Immigration Minister Tony Burke. Australia recently launched an improved online visa process for Papua New Guineans.