Papua New Guinea - Presentation Notes for Bali Process Meeting

Good morning, Hon. Bob Carr, and your Co-chair HE Marty Natalegawa, Excellencies, delegates, officials and my fellow diplomats!  Thank you Co-Chairs and your people for the wonderful arrangements and the hospitality.

This morning I present these few remarks on behalf of my Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon. Rimbink Pato, who has asked me to convey his sincere apology that he is not able to be available.  I take this opportunity also to convey my government's best wishes and support to the Bali Process since its beginning some 10 years ago.  Indeed, my government congratulate you for the 10th Anniversary and further extends its best wishes to the co-chairs and the progress that the Bali Process has gained thus far.

My Government supports and congratulates the new members:  U.N.O.D.C, U.A.E, and the U.S.A and welcome them.  PNG also acknowledge and show its gratitude for the hard work and quality of reports from Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, U.N.O.D.C and Australia for their coverage of the outcomes of the respective Bali Process Meetings and Workshops in their countries over the last twelve months.  Papua New Guinea supports the outcomes and commits to contribute when appropriate within own means.

Co-chairs, Papua New Guinea as most would know is a developing country blessed with abundance of natural resources on land and sea.  The effects of People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons, and related Transnational Crime does affect Papua New Guinea as well, although, the specific aspects of people smuggling and Trafficking in Persons appear on frequent basis, and may differ in experience in comparison to other member countries in this meeting today, and of course the unpredictable aspects  of related Transnational Crime continue to shows its ugly head more often these days.
On this note, we share the concern of increase in these illegal activities as shown by statistics of 2012.

PNG sits at the corridor of Asia and Pacific hence, the level of risk given its vulnerability is very high.  We continue to witness the growth of People Smuggling, Trafficking of people, and Transnational Crime, and related illegal activities.

Papua New Guinea's vulnerability is also characterized by our rugged terrains, with a 5,200 km coastline, with a sea mass of 2.7million, over many hundreds of small islands, sharing a 820km of common land, and sea borders with three other countries is a major challenge for the National Government of PNG to ensure the security and well being of 7 million people of which 80 percent live in the rural areas.  These difficulties pose tremendous challenge to the security agencies, and the nation's Defence force given their scarce resources and limited capabilities to cover the sovereignty.  Despite this, our security agencies, and the Defence Force continue to work within their means to close the security gaps as they arise to reduce the risk through out current vulnerabilities.

The key message which I would like to make clear at this meeting is that Papua New Guinea is committed to playing a constructive collaborative role with Regional partners of the Bali Process, of course, within our means to fight illegal movement of people either through organized groups or individuals, and including the need for care of victims.  This commitment is already clearly demonstrated by PNG's current cooperation with Australia in hosting an asylum seeker processing centre in its Island province of Manus.

Finally, Papua New Guinea notes the excellent opportunities mentioned by Australia and Singapore, and New Zealand for E-training is gladly noted.  We note also tracking technology VRS-MSRC as offered by U.N.O.D.C.  The important call by many member countries for information sharing is noted, particularly the need for timely and updated information and the need to share it on time.  We acknowledge that this will greatly contribute to strengthening the region in its effort to deal with our challenges.  On that note we also thank I.O.M for the new website design, administration, and management.

Thank you

Ambassador Peter Ilau