PNG’s free trade principles to be on show

Papua New Guinea is the first developing country to host the APEC Leaders’ Summit and the government and people of PNG view this as an opportunity to showcase PNG’s principles of free trade and fairness.

Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister, Rimbink Pato, called on his counterparts from the other 20 APEC economies to make inclusiveness the underlying principle to enable a more meaningful meeting.

Minister Pato said today’s 30th Ministerial Meeting is a culmination of all the lead up meetings held during the year that recognised the current challenges to the multilateral trading system.

The APEC Ministers will continue to talk about regional economic integration, the inclusive and sustainable growth and the digital economy.

“We acknowledge that more needs to be done to complete and pinpoint what we need to focus on after 2020 to continue the APEC momentum,” said Minister Pato.

Amongst the agendas today, service implementation framework, the free trade area of the Asia-Pacific and the implementation of governance mechanisms for the digital economy roadmap.

An important statement is expected to be made at the conclusion of the APEC Ministerial Meeting.

“With our citizens in mind, we’ll make some suggestions on how we introduce the very important statement we will jointly issue and for this statement to be relevant to the people of the APEC economies and we must introduce it by showing we have paid attention to certain key issues of the day that are affecting trade and, therefore, the lives of the people,” stated Minister Pato.

(Containers at a wharf in PNG’s industrial hub of Lae)

Carolyn Ure