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DEVELOPMENT AND ‘ECONOMIC HITMAN’ CAN OUR NEW NATIONAL TRADE POLICY ESCAPE THESE ‘LOOTERS’?

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by CYRIL GARE
One of the greatest challenges for our new first time politicians is to acquaint themselves with and understand the country’s foreign policy among others. It is even challenging for a first-time Minister. In many democracies in the world, a first-time politician does not become a Minister immediately. The reason is obvious. He or she must first understudy and learn the trade skills of the game before taking on a ministerial responsibility in Government.

Last week, we boasted about the launch of PNG’s first ever National Trade Policy (NTP). In time, many Papua New Guineans including myself will be able to read and understand the NTP from an available copy. For now, let’s just deduce from information provided in media reports that the NTP now “gives an upper hand to negotiate trade with its partners”.

In essence, trade involves supply and demand; i) we supply others with what they do not have, and ii) in reciprocate buy from them what we do not have such as medicine and fue…

PNG’s Challenges and Opportunities – 100 Day Plan

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by PAUL FLANAGAN PNG’s new government is proposing a 100 day plan. What should this consider? A good plan begins by fully understanding the challenges and opportunities facing its people. This understanding is improved by seeing how one is going relative to neighbours (comparative public policy analysis).
The list below from the ADB highlights that PNG still faces massive development challenges. It is saddening to see PNG’s poor rankings. PNG’s politicians have been failing their people.
On opportunities, PNG leads the world in key areas such as its cultural richness (1st), the extent of its tropical forests (3rd for the entire island), and its extraordinary biodiversity (PNG is one of 17 megadiverse countries in the world).

In terms of mineral and petroleum wealth, it actually does fairly poorly – even in LNG its ranks 47th and petroleum 62nd (details below).
In going forward, PNG needs to change its self-image of “mountains of gold in seas of oil”. This myth (at least in world terms…

PNG – CHANGE NEEDED TO MEET PEOPLE'S POTENTIAL

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by PAUL FLANAGAN

Summary
PNG politicians are failing their people. Their poor policies have led to dramatic declines in economic well-being – an extraordinary fall of over one-third since 1980.
This is revealed by applying new numbers from the PNG National Statistics Office (NSO) and International Monetary Fund to PNG’s economic history.
From 2012 to 2017, under the O’Neill government, average economic well-being for the people of PNG has declined by 2.8%.
This reverses positive economic gains of 8.4% from 2000 to 2012.
PNG is returning to the poor economic performance it experienced during the 1980s and especially the 1990s – lost decades for development. This is a shame.
From 1980 to 2017, economic well-being in PNG per citizen declined by an extraordinary 40.4%.
This is a development failure.
In contrast, the resource sector has grown strongly.  It is now 48.1% larger per capita than in 1980. The resource sector boomed by 62% during the 1990s when the non-resource se…