Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Papua New Guinea’s Prime Minister James Marape have signed the first ever New Zealand – Papua New Guinea Statement of Partnership today.
“This new Statement of Partnership reflects the importance we place on the close economic, cultural and people-to-people links our two countries have long shared,” Ms Ardern said.
“It is an important milestone in our relationship. By formalising the values, priorities and principles which underpin our strengthening partnership, we’ve set a clear pathway forward for the future engagement between our countries.
“We look forward to continuing to work alongside Papua New Guinea on issues facing our Pacific region, including the ongoing management of COVID-19 and the regional economic recovery.”
Prime Minister Marape told Prime Minister Ardern that New Zealand had always been a steady help to his nation, and even more so during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Thank you also for your interventions in the matter of the Bougainville Referendum and under your leadership, we have been able to ramp up our warm relationship through the New Zealand – Papua New Guinea Statement of Partnership,” Mr Marape said.
“New Zealand has always looked out for us and today I am happy that we are signing the undertaking for both our countries relationship going into the future.”
During the virtual meeting the leaders also took the opportunity to discuss the APEC Informal Leaders’ Retreat on 16 July, strengthening Pacific regionalism and the COVID-19 situation in Papua New Guinea, including how New Zealand could continue to support the Government of Papua New Guinea’s COVID-19 response measures.