PNG eyes more Fiji trade, trade war threats ex­pected to be re­solved soon

Fiji Sun - - Business -

Pa­pua New Guinea is de­ter­mined to have more trade mis­sions with Fiji, says its Trade, Com­merce and In­dus­try Min­is­ter Richard Maru. Mr Maru was com­ment­ing on the re­cent trade im­passe be­tween the two coun­tries which is cur­rently near­ing res­o­lu­tion. He said this was a thing of the past and needs to be solved so that both coun­tries can look for­ward to sign­ing the Me­lane­sian Spear­head Group trade agree­ment num­ber three. “We are de­ter­mined to have more of your trade mis­sions and we would like to bring our prod­ucts to the Bula coun­try,” he said. He was speak­ing to the Fi­jian del­e­ga­tion cur­rently in PNG to re­solve the trade is­sues con­cern­ing Ox & Palm corned beef, Trukai Rice and bis­cuit. He said: “This di­a­logue over the next few days is very im­por­tant to us as well. “I want to as­sure you ev­ery sup­port of our gov­ern­ment and team and we look for­ward to the pos­i­tive con­clu­sion and the out­come that we all de­sire as we want free trade in the MSG area.

“The most im­por­tant thing with the MSG trade agree­ment num­ber three is that it will not only cover the trad­ing of goods. “How­ever, the next one will cover ser­vices and labour mo­bil­ity so that Pa­pua New Guineans can be able to go work in Fiji and vice versa.” Mr Maru said the is­sues have never been in­cluded in the pre­vi­ous trade agree­ments, there­fore they aims to con­clude that by this Christ­mas so that they can sign off be­fore the elec­tions. He said the trade agree­ment has been ne­go­ti­ated for the past four years.

“So if the is­sue of trade im­passe con­cludes be­tween Fiji and PNG the four coun­tries rep­re­sented un­der MSG can be able to fi­nalise big­ger agree­ment which will have a big im­pact for all four coun­tries,” he said.

Cur­rent is­sue

Mr Maru said he is ex­pect­ing full co-op­er­a­tion from both teams to solve these is­sues and hopes the Fiji team can be able to tell PNG what is wrong with its prod­ucts.

“I will do what­ever it takes on my part to pull in all the in­for­ma­tion you re­quire from the com­pa­nies con­cerned so you can com­plete the task that has been given to you,” he said. “It is our ex­pec­ta­tion and our hope that this so called im­passe will be a thing of the past and we can move on. “The PNG gov­ern­ment is very keen to com­plete the MSG 3 as we don’t want this small im­passe to be a block­ade or hin­drance to a greater step we need to take as the sub re­gional trad­ing block.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Fiji

© PressReader. All rights reserved.