Foreign Minister to visit Papua New Guinea

Foreign Affairs

Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta departs for Papua New Guinea next week to engage kanohi ki te kanohi with partners and visit key development initiatives in the region. 

“As we continue to reconnect Aotearoa New Zealand with the world, it is vital that we invest time and effort into strengthening our ties with partners, especially in our own Pacific region,” Nanaia Mahuta said.

“This has, and continues to be, a challenging time for Papua New Guinea and Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa. With the ongoing impacts of COVID-19, climate change, and an increasingly complex security environment, the need to support and build resilience is more important than ever.

“Aotearoa New Zealand and Papua New Guinea share a warm and long-standing relationship and I look forward to reaffirming this in person with Prime Minister James Marape and the new Minister of Foreign Affairs Justin Tkatchenko.

“During my visit, I will also meet with other political and community leaders, and attend a roundtable lunch with participants from the Political Leadership Academy for Women where our focus will be on gender equality and empowerment for women and girls.

“Access to sexual and reproductive health and rights is a critical component of achieving sustainable development goals and many of our Pacific whanaunga need sustainable investment to do so. I look forward to discussing this further with NGOs and visiting health development initiatives while in Port Moresby. 

“I also intend to visit agricultural projects that New Zealand has supported. Engaging with these will include travelling to Mt Hagen and hearing about peacebuilding work from the United Nations and International Committee of the Red Cross representatives.

“New Zealand remains committed to working alongside Papua New Guinea, to ensure a more resilient, stable and prosperous Pacific region, for the benefit of all who are part of our Blue Pacific Continent,” Nanaia Mahuta said. 

The Foreign Minister will travel to Papua New Guinea on Monday 5 September, and returns to New Zealand on the evening of Thursday 8 September.