O’Neill backs Micro and Small and Medium Enterprises in Asia-Pacific

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill has called for countries in the APEC region to provide support to Micro and Small and Medium Enterprises as a means to create jobs and reduce poverty.

  O'Neill made this call following the first session of the APEC Leaders’ meeting that was focusing on the topic of Inclusive Growth through Integrated Economies.

“For Papua New Guinea, the dramatic growth we are experiencing must be carefully managed so that we can effectively continue to integrate with the region,”  he said at the end of the session.

 “As a developing country, we must ensure that our growth is inclusive of our people, and inclusive of the people of Pacific Islands nations.

“While the strength of our economy comes in large part from resources, the backbone of our communities is our micro and small to medium enterprises.

“In Papua New Guinea our SME Master Plan will create opportunities for MSMEs by reducing red tape, open access to the formal financial sector and stimulate the creation of thousands of jobs and many small businesses.

“That is why it is important that at these APEC meetings we must encourage our MSMEs to integrate with the broader regional economy, and to obtain benefit from opportunities to engage in global value chains.”

The Prime Minister said Papua New Guinea invites foreign investment and the Government knows that it must be proactive in order to keep attracting capital.

“Papua New Guinea is embracing the renewed APEC Agenda for Structural Reform that is increasing the competitiveness of our economy, and making our economy even more attractive to foreign investment.

“At a policy and technical level, we have made progress in changing processes and mindsets in our own economy. 

“This includes deregulation in telecommunication and energy and in the financial sector, and deregulating labor markets.

“Importantly we are restructuring and inviting private sector investment into our State-Owned Enterprises to create a truly competitive environment.

“It is our view that government should do what it does best, it governs and administers, and should let business look after business.

“We are delivering structural reforms for our people, particularly in education and in health, that is delivering real benefits for many families.

“It is important that we focus our efforts and where we will have a positive impact on our people.”

The APEC Leaders’ Summit is meeting on 18-19 November in Manila, Philippines, and is attended by the Leaders of APEC’s 21 Member Economies.

Press Release