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France and Papua New Guinea

Presentation

Political relations

The authorities of Papua New Guinea are following with interest French policy on the inclusion of French overseas communities in their regional environment and they wish to develop cooperation with the French territories, particularly New Caledonia, with which they share a sea border.

In general, relations with France have been stepped up in recent years. At the Second France-Oceania Summit in Paris in June 2006, the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, Sir Michael Somare, opened the session on regional political stability. Papua New Guinea participated in the Third France-Oceania Summit on 31 July 2009 in Nouméa, with the Hon. Puka Temu, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Lands and Physical Planning, and in the Fourth France-Oceania Summit on 26 November 2015, with the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration, the Hon. Rimbink Pato.

The French Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development received the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea Peter O’Neill on 19 June 2015. It was the Prime Minister’s first visit to France. Five months later, he made a second visit to Paris to attend the 21st Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21).

On 16 June 2016, the President of the French Republic received Prime Minister O’Neill on the occasion of the first France-Papua New Guinea Business Forum, organized in Paris.

Our military cooperation is also being stepped up thanks, in particular, to the participation of the Papua New Guinea armed forces in the multinational military exercise “Southern Cross” in New Caledonia. The High Commander of the French Armed Forces in New Caledonia (FANC) visited Papua New Guinea in November 2012.
France and the United Kingdom are the only EU Member States with diplomatic representations in Papua New Guinea.

Economic relations

Economic and trade relations between France and Papua New Guinea are limited but strengthening significantly, thanks, in particular, to investment in mining and gas. The government of Papua New Guinea has stated its will to diversify partnerships by selecting the TOTAL company for a major gas project.

The holding of the first France-Papua New Guinea Business Forum in Paris in June 2016 suggests a strengthening of our trade.

Cultural, scientific and technical cooperation

Our cooperation is based mainly on scientific cooperation focusing on research for development (agronomy, environmental science, natural risk management and geology), in conjunction with regional French research institutes, and on support for Francophonie.

Papua New Guinea receives financing from the Pacific Fund - PF (French Fund for economic, social and cultural cooperation in the Pacific). In 2016, the Pacific Fund helped finance the Ambitle Island project to promote coral reef adaptation to climate change, implemented by the French Research Institute for Development (IRD).

Updated: 04/08/2016

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