Visit to Papua New Guinea and The Philippines
I will make my first visit to the region as Minister for International Development and the Pacific this week, travelling to Papua New Guinea and the Philippines from 4 to 9 July.
Australia places the highest priority on working with our near neighbours and friends. The choice of these two nations for my first trip to the region in this role reflects the importance of these relationships.
In Papua New Guinea I will meet senior ministers in the Marape administration and representatives of the business and church communities. The visit will aim to deepen our already strong bilateral relationship and take forward our cooperation on health security and infrastructure.
I will formally open parts of the Australian-funded ANGAU Hospital redevelopment in Lae. I will also visit the site of the Trans-National Highway, which Australia is helping PNG to build, and the site of the proposed Wafi-Golpu mine, a critical private sector investment in PNG’s economic growth.
In the Philippines, I will meet with Government leaders and key development assistance partners delivering Australia’s COVID-19 support programs on the ground.
Australia and the Philippines are celebrating 75 years of diplomatic relations this year. The visit will affirm our deep and enduring relationship, based on mateship and bayanihan, a partnership that is responding to the challenges facing the Indo-Pacific, including economic recovery from the pandemic.
Australia’s partnerships with Papua New Guinea and the Philippines in their response to the COVID-19 pandemic benefits us all, and are also helping to keep Australia safe.
As close friends and neighbours, we will continue working together on our shared interest in an open, inclusive and prosperous Indo-Pacific region.