By Charmaine Poriambep
Women in the remote parts of Green River have requested the Vanimo Green District Administration to set up wholesale in Vanimo Town.
Women Leader Noreen Fanio said since the closure of the border due to COVID-19, women from Green River are now traveling all the way to Vanimo to purchase their stocks.
The closure of the PNG Indonesian border is forcing small businesses in Green River Station to divert to Vanimo Town to purchase their store goods supplies.
Green River Station is a few kilometers away from the PNG Indonesian Border, however, due to increasing COVID-19 cases in Vanimo, people are not allowed to cross over.
Women operating small businesses are forced to make the lengthy, costly and risky trip into Vanimo Town.
Lengthy, as it takes about 5 to 6 hours on a bumpy road, costly because it costs K80 to travel to Vanimo and K100 return trip, not forgetting freight cost for the cargo, and risky because of the often treacherous river to cross and the possibility of a road accident.
Noreen Fanio is a women’s rep in the Green River District.
She says purchasing store goods from the Asian owned shops in Vanimo is too costly.
With their little understanding of the effects and impacts of COVID-19 to the economy, they thought COVID-19 restrictions would reduce the cost of goods and services.
It is actually the total opposite and they found out the hard way, paying more than what they use to, and making less profit.
Noreen is calling on the Vanimo Green District Development Authority to set up a wholesale for small business in the rural parts of the Districts.
She suggests one wholesale in Green River Station so that the people won’t have to travel all the way to Vanimo.
This will save them hundreds of kina.
Local MP and the Opposition Leader, Belden Namah said the District is aware of the people’s struggles and with the limited funding given to his District, they will address the major infrastructure needs first, starting with rebuilding the Wara Dio bridge.
The 10 meters wide river that is the only missing link between Vanimo and Green River Station.