Papua New Guinea could become the “China of the Pacific”: exporters

Photo: RNZ Pacific/ Koroi Hawkins. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

SUVA, Jun 30, 2019, RNZ. Fijian exporters have been urged to focus on markets closer to home like Papua New Guinea rather than rely on distant economies such as China. In a presentation to local businesses in Suva this week, ANZ Bank economist Kishti Sen said PNG could become the “China of the Pacific” as the future looks promising for resources, reported the Radio New Zealand.

Dr Sen said PNG has a strong growing economy and is ideal for Fiji exports.

With uncertainty in the global markets, he says PNG could provide a stable destination for Fijian goods.

Dr Sen told the Fiji Times with the country’s economic growth predicted to fall below three percent over 2019 and 2020, there is a need to manage costs, run lean operations and be ready to take advantage of a stronger global economy.

He said with the current uncertain and weak external environment, tourism and remittance flows will be expected to slow with the construction industry close to peaking.

Dr Sen said industries expected to experience slower growth rates include real estate, accommodation and food, transport and storage, construction, agriculture, forestry and fisheries.

“Several mega projects in the oil and gas sector and mining are expected to commence early next decade and the new Prime Minister is unlikely to change project timelines as he has indicated that he will work with the private sector to deliver strong outcomes for PNG,” he said.

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