Rely more on yourselves: O’Neill

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill has highlighted the importance of ensuring countries draw on their own internal strengths and capabilities and build partnerships in order to enhance economic development.

O’Neill was speaking at the Eighth Pacific Islands Leaders’ Meeting (PALM8) in Iwaki City, Japan, where he said cooperation is essential but countries must take charge of their own responsibilities.

PM O’Neill told the leaders at the PALM Summit that while overseas assistance plays an important role in achieving their development goals, they must rely more on themselves.

He said driving our own economic growth is fundamental to the development in our country.

He added that delivering true economic growth is all about building partnerships across the country.

O’Neill further reiterated that Government cannot advance an economy alone and we must work with the private sector, NGOs and churches to achieve better health outcomes for our people.

He urged the leaders to look at better ways to enhance cooperation in the fields of healthcare, including the way they deal with infectious diseases like the fight against tuberculosis through the provision of medical equipment and better communication.

PALM, since its inception in 1997, has contributed to critical key development areas in infrastructure, education, health and transportation.

The Prime Minister further welcomed the proposed PALM Free and Open Indo-Pacific Strategy that aims to promote peace, stability and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region.

(Peter O’Neill with Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe)

Freddy Mou